Local scouts make generous donation
Canned food drive benefits local families and library patrons
–After teaming up to gather canned and boxed goods throughout the month, scouts from Pack 92 Tiger Cub Den made a generous donation at the downtown Paso Robles City Library to help locals in need. With their parents and den leader looking on, the scouts delivered a bounty of food and holiday spirit to Library Manager Karen Christiansen.
Their gesture, a culmination of days gathering nearly 30 bags of food items from family, friends, and schoolmates, resulted in the scouts helping their fellow community members in more ways than one. Not only will the food items benefit the hungry, but also patrons owing fines through the library’s annual Can Your Fines program, according to Christiansen.
“Their thought was that the Food Bank would benefit from the donation, and library patrons owing fines would also benefit because their fines would be paid with the cans donated,” said Christiansen.
When added up, 315 cans of food were donated by the young scouts, according to Tiger Cub Den Leader Erin Westmoreland.
“That amount of canned food items filled about two of the large bins at the library –wow!” exclaimed Westmoreland.
Just what inspired the scouts to do a canned food drive in combination with Can Your Fines? Westmoreland explains, “The Tiger Cubs were learning about one of the laws of the Scouts – being helpful. When I asked them how we could practice being helpful and showed them several options, they asked if we could have a food drive. One of the moms told us about the library’s annual Can Your Fines, so together we decided that it would be even more helpful to not only collect food but also help people pay their library fines. Then, by asking their friends to help, they learned that they could help more people in their community.”
The boys, first grade students at Trinity Lutheran School and Almond Acres Charter Academy, benefited from the generosity of student leaders in the Junior Optimist Octagon International Club (JOOI) at Almond Acres. JOOI held a “Free Dress Friday” food drive, with students that daily wear school uniforms given the opportunity to wear one non-uniform item for each canned food item brought in, and donated their collection to the scouts’ cause.
“The leadership students really helped us out,” said Westmoreland.
As for the overall result of the scouts’ efforts, Christiansen said she was “thrilled that these boys stepped forward to help others.”
“I am just so excited that these boys decided to choose the library’s Can Your Fines program and the Food Bank to benefit from their service project,” said Christiansen. “It’s sort of a ‘pay it forward’ type of activity for these boys, with each can representing one dollar in fines that will go towards library patrons’ fines. When someone turns in a book and has an overdue fine, we will let them know that their fine was already taken care of by the Pack 92 Tiger Cubs and that the food items that go to the Food Bank will help local families in need.”