Food pantries are receiving a special boost in supplies thanks to the Scouting For Food fundraiser organized by the Boy Scouts of America. According to WCNC, the Clover Area Assistance Center in South Carolina is counting on the Boy Scouts to help their efforts by providing food for those in need. The Boy Scouts encourage donations by leaving bags or door tags advertising the drive at homes around the neighborhood, and they pick up non-perishable food items from homes that have participated.
The Clover Area Assistance Center has what they call a “Full Choice Pantry” in which visitors can shop the shelves of the pantry for items they need. The executive director, Karen van Vierssen, shared that it is often difficult for many people to ask for help, and having this pantry set up this way allows them to receive help with dignity. She added that it is important to the Center that their clients feel respected, and that respect has attracted many people, some of whom have been using the service for years, and others who have used it temporarily. The Clover Area Assistance Center not only provides food for needy families, they also offer educational opportunities in budgeting and finance. Helping families “learn how to work with what they have,” is a blessing that helps them “move above and beyond.”
Van Vierssen explained that the Clover Area Assistance Center relies on donations from the community to stay up and running successfully, which is why their partnership with the Boy Scouts is so important to them. The positive community response to the fundraiser fills the gap in resources that the Center is unable to provide on their own. The non-perishable items donated through the Boy Scouts’ Scouting For Food fundraiser is one their largest donations that they receive at one time.
With the Boy Scouts and the Clover Area Assistance Center working together to encourage their neighborhood to give to those in need, the people in their community surely feel the compassion of others. While it is a blessing to have community members supporting one another, it is even better when they encourage each other to improve their lives either through giving or through seeking help. Generosity is an act of kindness with so many rewards for all involved, and through teamwork as shown by these two organizations, those rewards certainly multiply and make a difference.