It’s really a wonder that I haven’t dropped all my ideals, because they seem so absurd and impossible to carry out. Yet I keep them, because in spite of everything I still believe that people are really good at heart. Anne Frank
The idea of sponsoring a food drive came from the most unlikely of places. It was born from the social network that has been a byproduct, not the goal, of our blogging in particular and our online presence in general.
Through our activities here, we have become a part of a deep and diverse community, like it or not. We have become acquaintances with many and true friends with many more of the people we have met in the virtual space. They are agents, certainly, but they are also vendors, and they are simply buyers and sellers just passing through. When you take the time to look closely, to really break it down, none of us is unlike the other. We are all trying to do the very best we can in an uncertain and dynamic environment.
We all have job-thingies, and we have family obligations, and we have time constraints. Yet, I am reminded daily, through this wider Web that we are weaving, that at the end of the day (I know, Steve, this goes in the Bad Word Bucket), we are more similar than dissimilar, and that we all long for the same things: Security, shelter, friends, happiness, and community. It was during one conversation with someone whose philosophy I admire greatly that I was introduced to another who had participated in a similar event, an event which was loosely related but mostly unrelated to the daily business of our real estate business.
And thus came our Scripps Ranch Food Drive. I admit that I have often watched the telethon with celebrity spokesmen urging us to give, all the while thinking that they could just give (they have wealth I could never imagine, after all) and call it a day. But, it is really about using a platform to inspire others to respond in kind. Call it the power of the collective wherein a million little droplets can become a deluge.
We are not wealthy in the conventional sense, and I am certain that most everyone reading this will say the same about themselves, but if we were to be honest, we are blessed beyond words. So many others, sadly, are not. Steve and I are not in the position to save the world, or even save a village, but as residents of our San Diego village, we saw an opportunity to make a small difference.
We distributed food bags to approximately 4,000 homes (all on recycled paper, of course). We advertised the event locally for two consecutive months in the Scripps Ranch Newsletter (with a circulation of approximately 14,000), on our web site, on our blog, and in our own mailer to these same homes. Through the generosity of local residents and the Rotary-sponsored Scripps Ranch High School Interact Club, not to mention our own unpaid offspring (and we will surely pay in the end), we went on a scavenger hunt of sorts this past weekend to collect donations.
Now for the tally board. Scripps Ranch residents were magnificent in their generosity, and we can not begin to thank them enough for their donations and their support. We collected more than three-quarters of a ton of food for Second Harvest Food Bank for San Diego. We aren’t finished, because we are still getting calls today from neighbors who forgot the date but want to contribute. The morning after, still reeling from our food drive hangover, we found bags stacked at our front door. The front seat of my zippy-red VW Bug is full of canned goods as I write, and I am blown away by the outpouring we saw from our community.
A final thanks to all that gave of their weekend to help us with this effort. From the residents who called us asking if they could help, to John Lowe from our office, to the Scripps Ranch Interact Club brigade who rallied yet again for a worthy cause, we owe you a debt of gratitude. And, to Andrew Loeber from the Interact Club who provided so many awesome pictures, here is your special photo credit! You rock!