Letter: Help the hungry: Donate food at the polls Nov. 5

By Diane Cece

To the Editor:

NORWALK, Conn. – I’m writing to ask Norwalk voters to please donate to the annual Norwalk Election Day Food Drive. This is our sixth year of providing caring Norwalkers a convenient way to help our neighbors.

Giving is easy: when you go to the polls on Tuesday, Nov. 5, please bring a non-perishable food item for donation to a local pantry, this year to The St. Vincent de Paul Society Pantry in East Norwalk. This charitable organization provides over 1,000 local families with food every month. The need in all pantries is especially great as we head into the holiday season – and you may be surprised to know some of your own neighbors and co-workers visit local pantries weekly to help make ends meet.

Colorful, patriotic boxes can be found inside the polling sites, just before you enter to vote. Most needed items are canned tuna, canned soups and fruits, peanut butter and jelly, boxed macaroni and cheese, pasta and spaghetti sauce, hot and cold cereals, and healthy snacks (please, no soda).

We’re always looking for more volunteers to help, as there are over a dozen polling sites in the city and there is a lot of food to be picked up during the day and when the polls close at night.

Thanks in advance for your generosity this year. If you’d like to volunteer, or for more information, contact Diane at 854-6930 or email [email protected].

Cast a vote of compassion when you go to the polls and send the message from Norwalk voters again this year: “We know, we care, we help.”

Diane Cece




3 responses to “Letter: Help the hungry: Donate food at the polls Nov. 5”

  1. Don’t Panic

    Thanks Diane for this valuable contribution to the community.

  2. Joanne

    Glad to see you have continued the tradition Diane!

  3. Mary

    Weekly? Er, can we clarify that? All three pantry’s in town St. Vincents, Person 2 Person and Manna at the shelter have policy’s that clients can only access the pantry once a month and there is paperwork that clients must sign declaring that the client does not use any other pantry, which would disqualify the client for provisions from another pantry. So, in theory yes someone could possibly go to all three pantry’s, not be truthful and get provisions for three weeks, as the pantry’s only provide enough for an individual for about a week, really 3-4 days. Fresh anything is unheard of, its usually can goods, pasta, peanut butter and stale hard bread, oftentimes moldy. But no one is complaining, grateful for any help in these on your own, biiter cold shoulder times. It’s also noteworthy that St Vincents has a two month waiting period in effect, if you need help now, come back after New Years with your paper work to apply. CCA pantry has been taken over by P2P of Darien, as most are aware of, by now. What most aren’t aware of is, the convenient walk in hours the former Director of CCA Panrty Christy Pope had implemented including Saturdays has been replaced with a call ahead, by appointment only. Out of food today, call P2P and make an appointment for a week from next Monday. The thinking was that the merging of some of these agencies would be a good thing, more resources, larger volunteer/staff pools, however, looking at NEON and P2P, these mergers are not bringing better more accessible services to client’s/families in need. What is happening is these limited basic human resources are disappearing. The tattered safety net is all but an illusion to the ones suffering and in need. Thank you Diane for continuing this much needed effort and awareness campaign. The turn out may be low, as usual, but the ones that do vote are beginning to remember, to check the cabinets, for Diane’s food drive, before taking off to vote. I am anyway. Thank you Diane, you do make a real and tangible difference and set an awesome example how the rest of us should be actively involved in our community.

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