ALA Fort Worth Chapter
Community Service Projects
The Fort Worth Chapter of ALA is again working with the Tarrant Area Food Bank for 2014.
We will be staffing the registration desk for the “Bike For Kids” event on October 25, 2014.
If you are a member of ALA but cannot help with the actual event please consider a donation to the Tarrant Area Food Bank.
Please make all donations to the “Tarrant Area Food Bank” and send directly to the Food Bank or mail the donation to:
Susan Morgan, Firm Administrator with Bakutis, McCully & Sawyer, P.C.
500 West 7th Street, Suite 725, Fort Worth, Texas 76102
We appreciate all you do for our community.
Below are reports of past year’s events.
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The Fort Worth Chapter once again joined forces with the Tarrant Area Food Bank to help feed hungry members in our community. Specifically, the Food Bank asked if we could help raise money and, more importantly, provide volunteers to help with their November 23, 2013 ”Bike for Kids” project. The 5 mile bike ride for adults and children was being lead by Fort Worth Mayor Betsy Price and all the registration costs go toward feeding children.
Our chapter raised $2,450 which we presented to the Food Bank on November 14, 2013 and we were delighted to learn these funds will provide over 12,000 meals for children. On the evening of November 14, our chapter provided 14 volunteers to stuff 300 “goody bags” for the registered cyclists. Our chapter was paid the best compliment when Becky Delaune, development officer at the Food Bank, told a group of volunteers, “We so like working with ALA members, because they do what they say they will do”.
We had 19 volunteers ready to meet at 6:30 am on a cold Saturday morning to man the bike registration desk on the morning of November 23rd. As it turned out, however, the weather had a different plan and the bike ride was cancelled due to icy conditions. The great news, however, is that the Food Bank raised a total of $150,000 for the Bike for Kids program. Although we were disappointed the event was cancelled, raising money was the ultimate goal and the Food Bank hailed the Bike for Kids event a success!
2012 Community Connection Project
Cowtown Cares for Kids
2nd Place Winner for Visability
2012 marked the 25th Anniversary of the Fort Worth Chapter of the Association of Legal Administrators. We wanted to celebrate that anniversary by tying the number “25” to our contribution and volunteer effort.
Since our Chapter had donated money to the “Backpacks for Kids” project at the Tarrant Area Food Bank in previous years, we decided to take it up a notch this year and raise $2,500, and have 25 volunteers pack 2,500 backpacks during one evening of volunteer work.
The “Backpack for Kids” project is a weekend feeding program for children in our area who receive free or reduced-price meals at school. These children are often at risk of going hungry over the weekend. This program sends home backpacks filled with child-friendly, nonperishable food each Friday, and the child brings the empty backpack back to school on Monday.
We invited ALA Chapter members and Business Partners to participate.
On Wednesday, November 7, 2012, seven members of the Fort Worth Chapter of the Association of Legal Administrators along with law firm staff members, family, and Business Partners – swelling our group to 25 volunteers – met at the Tarrant Area Food Bank for a casual dinner of pizza. The Food Bank staff surprised us with a cupcake “cake” with Happy 25th on top for dessert. (see photo).
During dinner, a representative from the Food Bank, showed us a video about the Backpack program, and we heard first-hand from children who receive the backpacks each Friday. Our hearts broke when we heard a little boy share that “he’s sorry that the backpack got dirty, but he had to hide it under the house so his bigger brothers wouldn’t take the food away from him.” That was just one story of many that convinced our group that the work we would do that night would be meaningful.
Then our work began. Our group of volunteers stood side by side (see photos) and packed backpacks with soy milk, peanut butter crackers, and other child-friendly snacks. One person would assemble the box, another would inflate the bags, the next person would be responsible for one or two items, and so on down the line. Comments heard on the line were “can you imagine if this was all the food your daughter would have for two whole days?” to “my grandson eats more than this whole box while watching football on Saturday afternoon – and this little boy and girl makes this last all weekend!” “how very blessed my family is that we have food on the table each day!”
Once all of the backpack supplies were exhausted, we were drafted to help out in the grocery box packing section. We learned that qualified families may pick up 42 pounds of food each week from agencies supplied by the Food Bank. So, it was our job to pack an assortment of grocery items into these boxes. Items were chosen from enormous bins of donated food, and we tried to select not only an assortment, but also particular items that, when put together, would provide a planned meal for a family. Pasta and sauce, macaroni and cheese, condiments to spice up tacos, were just a few of the items we packed. Comments from volunteers included “can you imagine having to wait until you got your box of food from the Food Bank to know what you will feed your family this week?” to “thank goodness for these grocery stores who don’t throw away this food that is still edible.”
We exceeded our goal of raising $2,500 and made a contribution that evening of $3,070. Since our contribution will support the “Breakfast with the Stars” event (which supports the Backpack for Kids project), we will receive 15 tickets to the event. This event, held on a Saturday, is a fun day of activities for children who can come have breakfast with childhood heroes and make-believe characters and take part in activities like bean bag toss, gymnastics, crafts, and more. We are donating our tickets to Manual Jara Elementary School, an inner-city school we have worked with in the past. The tickets will allow families to attend a family activity – and get a meal too. WE EXCEEDED OUR GOAL FOR MONEY RAISED. WE MET OUR GOAL FOR VOLUNTEER PARTICIPATION. WE MET OUR GOAL FOR BACKPACKS PACKED.
At the end of our three hour volunteer session, each of us was exhausted, but had a sense of accomplishment that we had helped families in our community. Our Chapter contribution will provide snacks for lots of backpacks too, so overall, the Food Bank knows that Cowtown ALA Cares for Kids.