Groceries to be handed out to community service participants

NEIGHBORS

November 18, 1994|By KATHY SUTPHIN

Tomorrow, a new dimension of community service will debut in our area when the Mount Airy Lions Club holds its first distribution day for SHARE, the Self Help and Resource Exchange program.

Groceries will be distributed to more than 25 SHARE program participants from 10 a.m. to noon at the Mount Airy Senior Center, 703 Ridge Ave., said Lion Martha Paisie. Volunteers from the Mount Airy Jaycees are giving the local Lions a hand by picking up the food at a SHARE depot in Linthicum.

Participants paid $13 for each SHARE "food unit" in October and will submit receipts tomorrow certifying that two hours of community service were performed in the past month for each food unit purchased.

The nationwide program allows people of all income levels and interests to help their communities while stretching their food dollars. Anyone who is interested is invited to the Mount Airy Senior Center between 10 a.m. and noon to sign up for the next distribution day, which will be in December.

The Lions are eager to spread the word that everyone, regardless of income, is eligible to be a SHARE program participant. "If you eat, you qualify," said Mrs. Paisie.

Each food unit has an estimated store value of $30. People may purchase any number of units as long as they are prepared to volunteer for two hours of community service for each unit purchased.

From shoveling someone's driveway to teaching a Sunday school class, acts performed without pay to help a neighbor or neighborhood are considered community service. The program

operates on a voucher honor system, with community service ZTC receipts given to participants when they pay for their food units a month in advance.

Signed receipts, which may also be co-signed by beneficiaries of the volunteer work, are turned in when the food units are picked up.

Participants know their bounty will be "strictly food" and valued at $30 per unit, but the contents remain unknown until the units are distributed.

"It's almost like Christmas," said Mrs. Paisie. "You don't know what you're going to get."

One SHARE unit includes four or five meat items, eight to 10 produce items and one to three grocery items. Food is bought by buyers specifically for the SHARE program to ensure its quality.

"It's not government surplus," she said.

As the host organization, the Mount Airy Lions Club is required to register participants each month by taking their orders and advance payments, in cash food stamps or by Independence Card.

They also offer ideas for community service to anyone in need of suggestions. With the help of the Mount Airy Jaycees, they will also make sure the food is picked up, boxed and distributed on the monthly delivery day.

No refunds are offered to people who do not pick up their food, said Mrs. Paisie. The units, which include frozen meats, are perishable and cannot be stored.

She noted that Lion volunteers will stay until 12:30 p.m. in case someone is running late but that the food will be given to someone else if it is not picked up.

The local Lions are doing the program as a service to the community and to garner volunteer help with two of their projects, Santa Claus Lane in December and the Mount Airy Lions Carnival in June.

These events are labor-intensive, and help is always needed and appreciated. "Our members are getting older," noted Mrs. Paisie.

For more information about Mount Airy's SHARE program, call (301) 829-LION or Lions President Jay Fulmer at (410) 635-2714.

*

Don't forget to make room for "Sweet Dreams" this weekend by attending the all-student theater production at South Carroll High School.

Curtain time for the two-act futuristic spoof will be 7:30 tonight and tomorrow.

The comedy was written by David Muschell. Director Christy Blair, a senior, said the play is a family show that lasts about 1 1/2 hours and is "for anyone who has ever had a dream."

Tickets to the fall production will be sold at the door for $2.50.

*

Members of Mount Airy Middle School's Builders Club and South Carroll High School's Key Club will help members of the Mount Airy Kiwanis Club flip flapjacks at tomorrow's fall breakfast at Calvary United Methodist Church in Mount Airy.

The all-you-can-eat pancake feast will be from 6 a.m. to noon in the church's downstairs social hall, 403 S. Main St.

The menu will also feature sausage, eggs cooked to order, juice and coffee. The cost of the morning meal will be $4 for adults and $2 for children.

The event is a general Kiwanis Club fund-raiser.

*

Everyone will have the opportunity to have a delicious Thanksgiving dinner compliments of local restaurateur Bob Arnone, the Mount Airy Kiwanis Club and a volunteer team of holiday helpers.

Roasted turkey with all the traditional trimmings will be served from noon to 3 p.m. Thanksgiving Day at Christi's Restaurant, 101 Ridgeside Drive in Mount Airy. The meal will end on a sweet note, thanks to home-baked desserts donated for the event.

There is no charge for the dinner. Guests are welcome as singles or as a group.

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