Eight years ago, when the two monkeys I live with were just 4 and 5 years old, we started a Food Drive in our neighbourhood. By started I mean, we are the food drive. The three of us go door –to – door asking for non- perishable food donations.
When my youngest was just 4, his greeting sounded something like this:
“Hi. My name is Nate and can you donate some of your food cans for people who don’t have food at Thanksgiving.”
Tonight I heard this:
“Good evening. I’m Korly. For 8 years my Mom, brother and I have collected non-perishable food in our neighbourhood to donate for Thanksgiving to The Compass (local foodbank) and we’re wondering if you would contribute this year.”
Few adults are comfortable going door-to-door, networking or asking for help. This is a life skills the boys are developing that will assist them with interviewing, school presentations and first dates.
And there’s more. BE-ing my life values, every day, is what I aim to do in my life. The food drive is something the boys and I started to help each of us connect to the importance of giving forward, gratitude, humility, empathy and role modeling. We are never too young or too old to role model. Some years they have had friends join us for the experience. One year the boys were interviewed on City TV because of their amazing 300+ item haul. And every year, it gets deeper in our hearts as “just something we do, because it’s right (for us) to do”.
After 2 nights of door-to door canvassing, this year we collected 263 food items. The boys are excited, proud and understand that they are playing a role helping others have a better day.
As we get closer to our Thanksgiving weekend, many of reflect on what we have and hold gratitude for. I ask you to consider this year, how you are showing that gratitude to either yourself or others, so it deepens in a way that connects to your values just a wee bit more.
Happy Thanksgiving xo