Have you heard of Little Brother’s Pop Up Pantry (PUP)? Last month, eGenerationMarketing volunteered their time and donated fresh foods to create a successful PUP in Roxbury. At least once per year, their company tries to volunteer with a local nonprofit that serves the greater Boston community. This year, they asked to work with us! Here’s their experience from working with Little Brothers in the greater Boston community:
The Task: Make a Pop-Up Pantry
Our goal was to set up a pop-up food pantry for an organization that supports people in need. Little Brothers connected us with the Walnut House, an organization that provides the elderly and people with disabilities a place to live, meals, and social/recreational services.
Part one was grocery shopping. We took Market Basket by storm! Everyone had one or two items to get. Dan killed it with the whole-grain cereal choices (did you know that Cocoa Puffs are whole grain?), and Chris and Nadya picked out some truly delectable soups. After filling our truck to the brim with fresh groceries, we drove over to the Walnut House.
We were then met by our Little Brothers liaison and Executive Director, Nikki Therrien, in front of the Walnut House. We set up shop and made some little flower bouquets with donated flowers from Whole Foods. Once the pantry was ready to go, we were open for business! Residents of the Walnut House walked around the room with paper grocery bags supplied by Nikki, picking whatever fresh foods and pantry staples they wanted. The best sellers were the oranges, Cinnamon Toast Crunch, chicken noodle soup, and 1% milk. Lettuce wasn’t the hot-ticket item, but most residents were still happy to have fresh salad for the week!
Our Thoughts on the Experience
We had expected to hand out food and have a fun time, but what we weren’t prepared for was the sheer volume of gratitude the Walnut House residents had for our pantry. What may seem like a simple loaf of bread and carton of eggs to most of us is a fresh breakfast that wouldn’t otherwise be available for elderly Americans who have a low income. One of ten elderly Americans lives in poverty. Organizations like the Walnut House do invaluable work to give those most in need a place to live and food in their pantries.
Working with Little Brothers was a great fit for us because we serve very similar audiences. At eGenerationMarketing, we connect people with disabilities or the elderly with legal experts in their area who can help them receive Social Security disability benefits. A staggering 43% of single adults age 65% depend on Social Security for 90% of their income. It was truly fulfilling to work directly with the audience we help serve every day.
Volunteering with Little Brothers- Friends of the Elderly was a wonderful experience for our office and for the Walnut House residents Little Brothers connected us with. I’d highly recommend a corporate event with Little Brothers to any company interested in giving back to its community and volunteering those most in need.