PUHI — Kaua‘i Lions Club member Jim Whitfield not only gave a donation, he spent a couple of hours volunteering at the Hawai‘i Foodbank Kaua‘i warehouse in the Puhi Industrial Park on Saturday during the Kaua‘i Food Drive Day.
“We all agreed that whatever we collect today will go towards Maui recovery efforts from the wildfires,” said Hawai‘i Foodbank Kaua‘i Manager Wes Perreira.
“Currently, Maui doesn’t have enough space to accommodate all the supplies that’s been coming in. They’re negotiating for more warehouse space, so we’ll store the collection here until they get the room to accept the donated items,” said Perreira.
A Kaua‘i County Council certificate acknowledged the food drive on Saturday, commending the Hawai‘i Foodbank Kaua‘i “for its commitment towards nourishing Kaua‘i’s community in need.”
“We need volunteers,” said Carol Simon of Coldwell Banker and a co-leader of the Immaculate Conception Church Food Pantry program.
“We get our food from here, as well as a lot from the church parishioners. The food pantry program packs every other Thursday immediately following morning Mass. The packages are distributed on Saturdays following morning Mass to communities, primarily the homeless people, from Puhi to the Lydgate Park. We can really use volunteers to help us with this.”
More help came with the AmeriCorps Senior Kaua‘i Retired and Senior Volunteer Program (RSVP) program tent, where Whitfield dropped his contribution and chatted with director Mary Pigao on the upcoming National Day of Service that sprung from the 9-11 disaster in New York.
“The Hawai‘i Foodbank Kaua‘i will be there,” Pigao said. “We invite everyone to the AmeriCorps Senior Kaua‘i RSVP, sponsored by the county’s Agency on Elderly Affairs, ‘Come Together in Unity and Service’ in honoring and remembering those that have, and are sacrificing their lives in protecting our country, state and county.”
For the National Day of Service event that will take place on Sept. 11 at Kukui Grove Center in Lihu‘e from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m., RSVP will partner with Kaua‘i Voluntary Organizations Active in Disaster.
Other volunteers assisting with the single-day collection included food pantry volunteers, volunteers from Enterprise Rent-A-Car, Hawai‘i Foodbank Kaua‘i board members and Domino’s Pizza, whose donation included lunch for all of the volunteers in Puhi.
Another food drive and benefit concert organized by Kalaheo resident Mike Vallee was scheduled to start in the afternoon at the Anahola Marketplace benefiting the Kaua‘i Independent Food Bank.
Dennis Fujimoto, staff writer and photographer, can be reached at 808-245-0453 or firstname.lastname@example.org.