Saturday, March 9, 2013

Living United

He exited the grocery store, rolled his overfilled carriage to us, removed one small bag, looked at us, and said, "Thank you for doing this." 
We were stunned.
He was leaving an entire cart of groceries, what looked like enough for a small family for a week, as a donation for the Gemma E Moran United Way Labor Food Center.
This remarkable scene was repeated at least 3 times more and these donations, as well as hundreds of one or two cans of tuna, or peanut butter, or other items, at a time, filled our truck.
The people of Norwich were so, so generous.  It was an honor to play a small role in this.
This is the third food drive that the Backus Federation of Nurses has held in conjunction with the United Way of Southeastern Connecticut.  The first two combined for just over 3,000 pounds of food.
This time we collected 1729 pounds of food and $270 in cash and Stop and Shop gift cards, and we weren't even asking for money!
It is heart warming.
This year, we asked our brothers and sisters of the SPFPA, our security and support staff union, to join us, and they answered the call.
My deepest thanks to all the members who came out and donated their time, to the many, many people who donated food and or money.
Thank you also to AFT CT president, Melodie Peters, for helping and supplying lunch for us, for Lori Pelletier, secretary-treasurer of the CT AFL-CIO who stopped to donate and to help, to State Senator Cathy Osten and Norwich  Education to Employment Committee member, Charlie Witt, for their help, to our field rep, Greg Kotecki and his wife, who donated an entire carriage of food, to Backus Hospital president and CEO, Dave Whitehead, who stopped to get twizzlers for his daughter's acting group and donated 3 cases of vegetables,and to Sharron Peccini, of the United Way, without who's help none of this would come to fruition.
Thank you also to radio stations WICH and WILI for giving us air time to promote our drive and to Stop and Shop and it's unions.
The United Way theme, "Living United", was seen in action.
None of us has to do a lot, if all of us do a little.
Here's just a few of the pictures, more are on our FB site, "Backusnurses"