Written by: Kate McLaughlin
Date: Wednesday, September 18, 2019
Las Vegas is a 24-hour town, but even the Strip quiets down in the hours just before dawn, which is when things start picking up on the docks at Three Square Food Bank. By the time I arrive at 5:00 a.m., half a dozen drivers have already hit the streets heading out to deliver to our agency partners in Pahrump or Laughlin, collecting donations at grocery stores throughout the valley, bringing produce and SNAP to food deserts, and delivering meals and weekend food bags to schools. In the next hour or two, they'll be followed by almost two dozen other drivers. It's a whirlwind of activity as drivers rush to check invoices, ensuring they have enough milks and snacks for their sites, tracking down missing pallets, and confirming they have the supplies they need to complete their day. And then, they're gone, crisscrossing the Vegas Valley, easing food insecurity with every stop.
Like being backstage before the curtain goes up on the opening night of a show, there are a myriad of details that go into each delivery our team makes. The kitchen produces thousands of meals daily with the help of volunteers. The Volunteer Team assembles Senior Share boxes and pallets of bagged produce, while the Warehouse Team loads pallets of goods to go out to partner agencies. The Programs team visits schools where teachers help ensure the kids get the nutrition they need to learn. In the end, it's simple. A child, a senior, a homeless person, and/or a family gets to sit down to a meal that they might not have otherwise.
I love the quiet that follows the mass exodus of drivers each morning. The day will be brighter for many of our neighbors because of what they'll deliver. I get to put together the plan for tomorrow, and the next day, and the day after that, because hunger never takes a break... and we don't either.