This past week, I had the opportunity to take part in a program run through the university’s Center for Service and Social Justice called EFFORT.
EFFORT, which stands for Excess Food For Others Recovery Team, aims to raise poverty awareness and to help those in need by providing food donations. Formerly known as the Community Outreach Office, the Center for Service and Social Justice helps to make this program possible.
EFFORT is made up of a small number of Center for Service and Social Justice student workers who then recruit other students, such as myself, to participate in the program. A large part of the program is picking up food and delivering it to local agencies.
Several times throughout the week, volunteers drive to stores such as Panera Bread and Price Chopper Supermarkets at closing to pick up left over bread and baked goods from the day. The next day, these food items are driven to churches and other agencies in the community.
To help facilitate this process, the Center for Service and Social Justice provides their van for transportation. Students who have their driver’s license can go through a certification process to be able to drive the van for EFFORT.
I was able to take part in this just last week. I brought along a couple of friends too to help direct me around the city while I drove the van and to help carry the donations. We went to Panera Bread one evening, and the next day, we traveled to three different agencies to drop off the donations.
Picking up the food was a breeze, and we were well received at each of the agencies we went to. All in all, this simple act of service proved to be very rewarding.
For more information on EFFORT, check out their webpage by following this link: http://www.scranton.edu/ministries/community-outreach/effort.shtml