2019 Holiday Food Drive & Operation Christmas Basket helps 165 union families

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Two of the popular Holiday Programs at the Sacramento Central Labor Council that the Community Partnership Program & the Labor Liaison helps coordinate are the annual Holiday Food Drive & the Operation Christmas Basket Programs.

The Holiday Food Drive encourages Local Unions to set-up fifty-five-gallon collection barrels in their Union Office, Meeting Hall, or Apprenticeship Center, and encourage their Members & Staff to donate non-perishable food items.  The food items collected goes towards re-stocking the AFL-CIO Food Closet (Tom’s Closet), and supplies a significant amount of food for the annual Operation Christmas Basket distribution.

The Operation Christmas Basket Program helps assist the SCLC Affiliates struggling Union Families during the Holidays, by providing them with a complete Christmas Dinner, many food items for their pantry, and age-appropriate toys for their children!

This year thanks to the generosity of numerous Local Unions and community partners both the Holiday Food Drive & Operation Christmas Basket programs were very successful, hitting many milestones in their promotion & execution:

Holiday Food Drive
1.    Placed more Holiday Food Drive Collection Barrels in Union offices and Apprenticeship Centers than ever before.
2.    Through our promotion of the Holiday Food Drive we had more requests for collection barrels than ever before, requiring us to purchase 5 more barrels to meet demand.
3.    More food product was collected than ever before, as a result of having more collection barrels placed in Union facilities.
4.    Recruited more volunteers than any previous year for the Holiday Food Drive Sort and Processing activity.
5.    Tom’s Closet (AFL-CIO Food Closet) was audited, and all of the 2019 product was removed from the shelves. It’s important that the food closet does not have expired items on the shelves.
6.    As a result of the food drive, Tom’s Closet is completely restocked, and ready for emergency food requests for the coming year.
7.    Donated 2,471 pounds of food product to the Sacramento Food Bank after restocking Tom’s Closet & the Operation Christmas Basket distribution, benefitting families all over the Sacramento Region.

Operation Christmas Basket
8.    Through our expanded outreach efforts, we took on several first time Operation Christmas Basket requests from Local Unions.
9.    We were able to provide 165 Union Families with a free turkey, a complete holiday meal, numerous items for their pantry, age-appropriate toys for 485 children.
10.    Food product was attained from more donor organizations & Local Unions than ever before.
11.    The shopping list of items that each family received was expanded significantly this year.
12.    “Peoples Guide to Services” were given out to all the recipient families this year.
13.    Was able to negotiate with a local moving company for the use of their pallet jack for the food product move-in.
14.    The OXB distribution occurred at the United Way offices through the AFL-CIO/United Way Partnership.
15.    Each Union Representative picking up food & toys was given information regarding the upcoming Income Tax Canvasses.

As you can see thorough the partnership that was created many years ago between the United Way California Capital Region, the Sacramento Central Labor Council/AFL-CIO, and our Local Unions, we were able to lift the spirits of so many Union Families this Holiday Season, and re-stock the AFL-CIO Food Closet, so that we can be responsive to the Labor Council’s Affiliates emergency food requests throughout the coming year!

The Sacramento Central Labor Council & it’s Community Partnership program would like to thank all of the Local Unions who set-up collection barrels, encouraged their Members to donate food product or volunteer at one of our Holiday activities, or helped supply food product for the Operation Christmas Basket Program!  Your efforts went a long ways to spread a little “Holiday Joy” to so many Union Families in the Sacramento Region!