Making A Difference
Last week, I toured the Ukiah Food Bank facility with Ford Street Project Executive Director Jacque Williams. Ford Street, which oversees food bank operations, is in the initial stages of remodeling the entire food bank facility and Jacque was excited to review the plans with us.
Instead of utilizing the warehouse for both food storage and food distribution, the food bank is remodeling their office space and adding a store-front, grocery-style area from which to distribute food—away from the dangers of the warehouse. They are also building a new kitchen and community meeting room, which will be used to provide regular classes on nutrition and healthy food preparation techniques.
I can’t tell you how excited I am to see these much-needed improvements occurring at the food bank. They will greatly enhance food distribution, and the classes and new meeting and cooking facilities will benefit our entire community.
Every year, the Ukiah Daily Journal sponsors the Food Bank Fund Drive. I wish I had words to explain how incredibly important this drive is in delivering food to those who would otherwise go hungry in our community. If you have donated already, thank you! If you haven’t yet, please consider it.
Your donation means that local families will have a place to turn so they can put food on their table this year. Like many communities, ours struggles to support those in need, and our local food bank is a vital part of helping people who have nowhere else to turn. When people have enough food to eat and a place to sleep, it helps prevent crime. Your donations to our local food bank make our community a safer place—and a better place to live for everyone.
Donating couldn’t be easier. Just drop off a check payable to Ukiah Food Bank at the Ukiah Daily Journal office at 617 S. State Street.
KEEPING PACKAGES SAFE
With the holidays approaching, I also thought now would be a good time to include some tips on how to avoid losing mail-order packages. Left unattended, these attractive Christmas gift packages can vanish as quickly as they arrive.
If your employer will allow it, have packages delivered to your office.
Have packages delivered to a place where they can be received in person (by a trusted neighbor or retired family member who is home during the day).
Ask the shipper to hold your package at their pick-up facility so you pick it up.
If you’re purchasing something from a large retailer, consider having your package delivered to the store.
Request a specific delivery date and time so you can plan to be home.
Provide instructions to the shipper so packages can be left in a safe location that isn’t visible from the street.
Sign up for delivery alerts (text messages or emails) from the shipper and call a trusted friend to pick up and hold your package until you can retrieve it.
While some Christmas gifts are difficult (or impossible) to find in town, I strongly encourage you to look for gifts from local businesses as often as you can. We’ve all been encouraged to “Buy Local,” but sometimes people wonder if it really makes a difference. I can tell you: it does!
Spending our dollars with local businesses not only guarantees our packages won’t be lost in transit, it keeps our friends and neighbors employed. As the holidays approach, now is the perfect time to buy fantastic gifts right here in Ukiah.
Finally, I’d be remiss if I didn’t remind you that Santa has only a few weeks left to help with our local Christmas Effort. If you’d like to help, please visit www.facebook.com/UkiahValleyChristmasEffort to learn more, or call (707) 272-9627 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. They can sure use our help.
As always, our mission at UPD is simple: to make Ukiah as safe as possible. If you have suggestions on how we can improve please feel free to call me. If you would like to know more about crime in your neighborhood, you can sign up for telephone, cell phone and email notifications by clicking the Nixle button on our website: www.ukiahpolice.com.