So I decided on my 2016 resolution! After a careful analysis of my big-picture goals (and my bank account), I decided to go with volunteering at least once a month over taking (rather expensive) dance classes.
That’s not to say that I won’t dance at all in 2016, but I’m not going to make it a huge priority when I could be doing other things with my time (and money).
Today I completed my January volunteer activity – meal packing with Open Hand Atlanta. I invited a couple of my friends along with me –I guess I kind of roped them into my resolution too 🙂
A little bit about Open Hand (from their website:
Open Hand helps people prevent or better manage chronic disease through Comprehensive Nutrition Care™, which combines home-delivered meals and nutrition education as a means to reinforce the connection between informed food choices and improved quality of life.
Open Hand seeks to eliminate disability and untimely death due to nutrition-sensitive chronic disease.
To serve our community by empowering people to live healthier, more productive lives.
So basically, Open Hand has a few different programs to help people who are too ill to prepare their own meals. What I like about this organization is that they really do take a comprehensive approach to nutrition. Open Hand works with dietitians, health care providers, and real chefs to create healthy meals for their clients. There are different menus for different dietary needs. Some of their beneficiaries actually “graduate” from prepared meals and move on to learning how to cook for themselves with ingredients provided by Open Hand.
Open Hand also has a sister company, Good Measure Meals. Good Measure Meals sells prepared meals to the general population, and for every two meals they sell, Open Hand gets one! They offer customized options based on calories, dietary needs, and preferences.
During the orientation for our shift, I got to thinking about how I’m incredibly fortunate to be able to prepare my own food and eat what I want. My food anxieties seem so silly compared to the real struggles which face people who cannot feed themselves.
We were a part of the meal packaging team, which meant we were loading food up into containers as part of an assembly line. It was actually really fun and the time flew by. The meals were prepared that morning by the culinary team, and they looked GOOD! One of the meals we packed was like, some shrimp gumbo with rice and corn pudding. These people eat yummier food than I do half the time!
I will definitely be back to volunteer with Open Hand. I really like the idea of helping those less fortunate live a healthy, balanced life, which is also what I want for myself. Learning about Open Hand put my own issues with food into perspective for me — how lucky am I that I get to go to the store and choose what I want to cook, or enjoy a meal out with friends? Some people don’t have that luxury. Fortunately, Open Hand assists with making their lives more satisfying.