Volunteer Recognition Luncheon

The Pantry hosted this year's Volunteer Recognition Luncheon on Saturday, September 9. Matt Dababneh, the representative for the 45th California Assembly district, was the keynote speaker. He presented the Pantry with certificate of appreciation from the State Assembly for our work providing food for those in need.

The following volunteers were honored:

Achievement Awards:

Donna Shuster for 32 years of service at the Pantry, including serving as the first Chairperson of the Pantry Board.

Helene Fernandez for 17 years of service as a volunteer, the Pantry scheduler, and Board member.

Star Awards:

Marlene Naumann, a RN from Providence Health Care. Marlene has assisted with the Prince of Peace health needs since 2000 and has coordinated all of the Pantry Health Fairs.

Gabe Adorjan from Modern American Dentistry. Gabe examined 60 clients at the last Health Fair, provided thousands of dollars of dental work to our clients, and has signed up to do the next fair.

Barbara Partridge, the head of the POP vegetable garden. Barbara plants, tends, coordinates workers, and delivers fresh vegetables daily to our clients.

Rick Karp has worked as a computer volunteer and database input volunteer for the past 2 years, working at least ten hours a week.

Smile Awards:

Lee Tishler has been with the Pantry since 1994. She is a retired teacher, she is a lead on Senior Wednesdays, she works the food drive with Al Trumpler, and we all love her sense of humor.

Roz Leitner has been with the pantry about 6 years. She always wants to be help, and the clients appreciate her patience.

Leah Marks has been with pantry over 5 years and is the point person for the Pantry Pet Food Drive. We appreciate that she is always welcoming and love her infectious smile.

Marquese York has been with us about a year. He volunteers on Tuesdays and Thursdays, setting up the Pantry and helping keep the storage units organized. He provides the muscle we all need.

Les Carney has been with us since last November. He coordinates all the drivers and does food pick up. We appreciate his kindness and problem solving abilities.

West Valley Food Pantry Starts New Homeless Program

In response to the increasing number of true homeless in the West Valley, the Food Pantry started a new and expanded program at our Prince of Peace site on April 3, 2017. Previously, homeless without resources to cook or refrigerate food have been furnished enough food for one day (plus extras) weekly. These homeless will now be able to receive enough food for three days (per person) weekly! This new policy entails additional food purchases for Food Pantry, since the size of the cans or containers used is smaller than those normally received through donations, and they must have "pop-top" lids.

(A homeless person is defined as one who has no regular abode or shelter or who sleeps in their car. They have no way to cook or refrigerate their food. They declare the intention of staying in our regular West Valley area for a short period (desired, but not required). They also "self-certify" that they are low-income (rather an obvious declaration).)

About 45 homeless "families" depend on our Pantry each week - an increase of 50% over last year. The Pantry has established a separate fund to cover the cost of the new program. Presently we have enough money for a year forward! We are receiving help from Trader Joes and Sprouts as well, and we are very thankful for their role. We also receive bread and bakery goods from other markets in the valley. The program is now running at our Prince of Peace site and is expected to be extended to our FRC site (Canoga Park Presbyterian) by July 1, 2017

(by Alfred O. Trumpler, Treasurer)