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About Respecting Our Elders


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The story of Respecting Our Elders, an all-volunteer 501(c)3 charity organized primarily to collect and distribute free food to needy seniors and others in Marin County, California. How we do what we do can be duplicated in any community all across the United States.

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About Respecting Our Elders

  1. 1. What is Respecting Our Elders? <ul><li>Respecting Our Elders is an all-volunteer 501(c)3 charity organized primarily to collect and distribute free food to needy seniors and others in Marin County. </li></ul>
  2. 2. How were we created? <ul><li>The organization was formed in July, 2005 by a couple of concerned residents of the subsidized housing development at the Villas at Hamilton in Novato, Ruth Schwartz and Curt Kinkead. </li></ul>
  3. 4. What is the goal? <ul><li>In starting the food program, our goal was to reduce the amount of money a participating resident in the Villas at Hamilton would have to pay per month for food to less than $100 (with the neediest paying almost nothing). </li></ul>
  4. 5. GOAL! <ul><li>The goal was achieved over three years ago, with help from Trader Joe's, Starbucks, Whole Foods, Safeway and Peet's Coffee and Tea. </li></ul>
  5. 6. In retrospect… <ul><li>It was only in retrospect that we realized that we had eliminated poverty as well . </li></ul><ul><li>The surplus is now feeding senior citizens at up to 15 other subsidized complexes in Marin County, and several of them are poverty-free as well. </li></ul>
  6. 7. Results: <ul><li>The program produces results like no other aid program before it. It targets individual needs and assures that the neediest get the most. </li></ul>
  7. 8. Above all, <ul><li>Respecting Our Elders is building community by forcing complexes to come together as communities to deal with the incoming food, and it is these unfettered communities that do the distribution, making a profound difference in the lives of entire complexes of the most underserved population in our society today - our senior citizens. </li></ul>
  8. 10. On a weekly basis, <ul><li>we are distributing food to up to 16 different subsidized housing complexes, improving the lives of over 1500 seniors in Marin. </li></ul>
  9. 11. In addition, <ul><li>each week we have had five open food days at </li></ul><ul><ul><li>the Bolinas Community Center Food Program (twice a week) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>the Salvation Army in San Rafael </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>St. Andrews Church, Marin City (to be restarted soon) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Hamilton Field in Novato </li></ul></ul>
  10. 13. A whole new approach! <ul><li>Our program can do things no other aid program has ever been able to do before, like </li></ul><ul><ul><li>targeting individual needs and </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Filling people up so that they in turn have surplus in their lives so that they are in a position to give to others, including family members or close friends who are in need of some extra food. </li></ul></ul>
  11. 14. What happens weekly: <ul><li>We deal mostly with fresh food, so whatever comes in each day goes out that same day, often in the hands of recipients within a half hour of when it is picked up. </li></ul>
  12. 16. What comes in <ul><li>Thanks to the generosity of Trader Joe ’s in San Rafael, we pick up donations twice a day, seven days a week, as well as the paper-wrapped bread and flowers at Trader Joe’s Novato. </li></ul>
  13. 17. Every day, <ul><li>Trader Joe ’s in San Rafael donates all of their dated goods, from rib eye steaks and fresh produce to stuffed mushrooms and gourmet salads, as well as other goods like laundry detergent and kitty litter when those packages have been damaged and can ’t be sold in the store. </li></ul>
  14. 18. On Saturday mornings, <ul><li>volunteers go to Whole Foods & Safeway in Mill Valley to pick up their donations. </li></ul>
  15. 19. How all that surplus goes out! <ul><li>Seven days a week, volunteers take the wonderful variety of Trader Joe ’s food, bread and flowers to up to 16 different Section 8 and Section 54 senior complexes throughout Marin County, </li></ul><ul><li>as well as to the Open Food Days throughout the County </li></ul>
  16. 21. In addition, <ul><li>bread, flowers and pastries go to </li></ul><ul><ul><li>The Salvation Army </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>The Novato Human Needs Center </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>New Beginnings at Hamilton Field </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>the Canal Alliance in San Rafael </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Women’s Center in San Rafael </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Women Helping All People </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>St. Andrews Church in Marin City </li></ul></ul>
  17. 22. Our Brown Bag Program <ul><li>On Saturdays at the Villas, we pack approximately 85 bags with food from the Mill Valley Whole Foods and Trader Joe ’s . Many of these bags are delivered to residents at the Villas at Hamilton who cannot come and shop for themselves, with about 40 bags going to others in Marin who have let us know that they are in need of food. </li></ul>
  18. 29. Recent Food Donor Additions <ul><li>Mondays through Fridays during the school year, we pick up the still hot leftovers from the Good Earth Organic Lunch program and create “Sudden Suppers” at the various senior complexes, New Beginnings, The Salvation Army and other distribution locations. </li></ul><ul><li>Working with The Salvation Army, we started this weekend to pick up bread and pastries from Costco on Saturdays, adding these goodies to the brown bags that go out that day. </li></ul>
  19. 30. How you can help <ul><li>Respecting Our Elders currently has over 100 volunteers, about 50 who sort, pick up and deliver to the various senior complexes, then resident volunteers who unload, sort and display what comes in, and then, if necessary, divide, pack up and load our surplus for delivery to other complexes. All of these volunteers are also recipients, because this is something we are doing as a community. </li></ul><ul><li>If you wish to donate time, contact Curt Kinkead, our Lead Volunteer. </li></ul>
  20. 32. And… <ul><li>In terms of cash donations, we are always in need of money to cover our ever increasing monthly gas and van repair expenses, as well as our board & vehicle insurance payments. </li></ul><ul><li>There is no paid staff, and minimal administrative/office supply expenses. </li></ul><ul><li>To make a donation, ask for a Financial Family donation card where you can join our Financial Family and making a regular, automatic donation each month and/or make a one-time donation. </li></ul>
  21. 33. Thank you! We wish to express our profound thanks to our ongoing Financial Family members: <ul><li>Genie Ohashi </li></ul><ul><li>Lilli Heart </li></ul><ul><li>Lindy Woodard </li></ul><ul><li>Loma Alexander </li></ul><ul><li>Lonnie Green </li></ul><ul><li>Mark Bachelder </li></ul><ul><li>Mary Chase </li></ul><ul><li>Susan Miller </li></ul><ul><li>Virginia Jenny </li></ul><ul><li>Fay Freed & Ronn Landsman (our charter donors) </li></ul><ul><li>Amor é Tackett </li></ul><ul><li>Caterina Rando </li></ul><ul><li>Dale Kemp </li></ul><ul><li>Diane & Ray Vetterlein </li></ul><ul><li>Diane Greenberg & Neal Rogin </li></ul><ul><li>Gary Dunn </li></ul>
  22. 34. And . . . our heartfelt thanks to our most recent corporate/organizational donors: <ul><li>Whole Foods of Mill Valley for including Respecting Our Elders in their Nickels for Nonprofits program, March-Mary, 2009 </li></ul><ul><li>Unitarian Universalist Church of San Rafael for their Basket Share in January 2009 </li></ul><ul><li>Birkenstock USA , for the gift of a 1998 Gold Dodge Caravan in June 2008. </li></ul><ul><li>Tamalpais Bank for their very generous check in October, 2008. </li></ul>
  23. 35. Thank you for learning about us! Respecting Our Elders <ul><li>Taking care of our own in Marin </li></ul>