Only two weeks left until the Foodie 5K at Cantigny Park. If you’ve started the Couch to 5K plan from the last post, you should be feeling more confident and excited to hear the horn at the start line – keep going!
We all love how our body feels from training—the camaraderie you may be building with your teammates, the excitement of knowing you’ll be finishing the day with delicious food and the other perks that come from being involved in the Foodie 5K. While all of these things are great, we also can’t forget the real reason why hundreds of runners, walkers, and volunteers come together each year for this event.
The reason why we walk, run, and fundraise is the people right in our backyard – our hungry neighbors who struggle with tough choices like paying their bills or paying for groceries.
Last year, Joseph walked into HCS Family Services for the first time. Like so many others visiting our network of feeding programs, Joseph never expected he or his family would ever be a recipient of the food pantry’s services. In the past, Joseph had even been a donor to food drives supporting Northern Illinois Food Bank when one day, fate changed his circumstances in an instant.
Joseph is a skilled union carpenter by trade, and a proud Army veteran who served from 1990 to 1994. In 2009, Joseph suffered a life-changing event when he fell 200 feet and broke his back and shoulder. As a result, he now requires the use of a cane to walk. Joseph is supporting his family on a fixed income of $1,200 per month. His wife Candice has numerous health issues and is unable to work. He explains that Candice’s medication is very expensive and is not fully covered by Medicare. Like most people, Joseph had savings when he worked and was fortunate to have a 401(k); however, those funds are nearing depletion.
Realizing his options were running out, Joseph didn’t know where to turn. He met with an administrator from his children’s school to explain his family’s situation, and was directed to the food pantry as a source of nutritious food. Because of generous donors like you, Joseph and his family can stock their shelves today, and tomorrow also looks a little bit brighter.
There is plenty of time left to make a true impact in the lives of our hungry neighbors. Every dollar matters! The Food Bank can provide $8 worth of food for every $1 you fundraise, meaning every $30 you raise provides $240 worth of food to a family in need! And if you haven’t started fundraising already, it’s not too late to start! Check out our tips on how you can become a Foodie VIP just by raising $250+ in ONE week.
And, remember to keep asking and sharing your fundraising page! If this makes you uncomfortable, keep in mind that you are asking for families like Joseph’s and not for yourself.
Stay tuned for next week’s post for a sneak peak of what to expect during the day of the event.