Orlando ‘Can’ Care Challenge

dscn4733_croppedDid you know that the Coalition relies on Central Florida (individuals, corporations, foundations, and religious institutions) for over 70% of our resources?

We know ours is a fantastically generous community because you always rise to meet the needs of the hundreds of men, women and children we serve. With your strong track record in mind, we are asking for your help to serve struggling families and individuals in a particular way.

Most meals are supplied by our dedicated volunteer meal serve groups, but however, the Coalition must dip into our food reserves to prepare and serve any unsponsored meals. Recently, we’ve noticed a drastic drop in food donations from individuals and in the food supplies available from local food banks. To meet the shortage we face, we are launching a bold Challenge to the local community: the “Orlando ‘Can’ Care Challenge.” And, we even have a prize for our winners.

can_cornHere’s the premise of this Challenge:

• The Coalition is in need of some hefty food donations since our food supply has decreased (both from individual donations and from food banks). We are seeing more and more that our community is facing increased needs, yet decreased donations. 

• We have decided to test the waters of social media by challenging our Twitter, Facebook and blog friends to help meet this need. And in return…

• The top two donors will be offered a chance to guest blog on the Coalition’s blog. This would be the perfect opportunity to share on the importance of giving back to your community or on the benefits of social media for social causes. Our last company-focused blog post was about Correct Craft, a Central Florida business that has given back to the Coalition in the midst of hard times. Their post, “Don’t give in – give back!” has received nearly 900 hits so far and consistently receives new hits every day. Our top two “Orlando ‘Can’ Care Challenge” donors (determined by pounds of food donated) will have the opportunity to get in on that action. (The Coalition reserves the right to review blog posts before posting to ensure they are appropriate and accurate.)

can_cornHere are the basic rules of this Challenge:

• The Challenge will be open from today, May 7 until Friday, May 15 at 5 p.m.: Donations can be made at our main campus in downtown Orlando (click here for directions. Donation hours are Monday-Friday, 9 p.m. – 5 p.m.). When you drop off donations, make sure you tell the front desk you are a part of the “Orlando ‘Can’ Care Challenge” so we can snap a photo and record your name or the name of your group/company (unless you prefer anonymity). We’ll be posting real-time updates for our social media community as donations come in, so be looking for your group on Facebook, Twitter and Flickr.

• We need many, many multiples: Since the Coalition serves hundreds of meals each day, a grocery bag filled with an assortment of canned veggies and fruits won’t be used as quickly as a large quantity of one food item. We are asking that each family/group/company pick one item to target from the list below, and then gather a quantity of just that food item.

• Stick to the list: We are stressing our need for canned goods, but we also need some other food items. Pick a target item from our list below that your group will get excited about and you will be set! (Donation hours are Monday-Friday, 9 p.m. – 5 p.m.)
      – canned/frozen/fresh fruits (apples, fruit cocktail, mandarin 
        oranges, peaches, pears, and strawberries would all make
        yummy choices)
      – canned/frozen/fresh veggies (carrots, corn, green beans,
         peas, tomatoes and potatoes are some client favorites)
      – rice, pasta and instant mashed potatoes (always a good side 
      – frozen meats (ground beef, chicken and pork are used most 
      – Juice (must be 100% juice to meet our federal nutrition 

• Be generous: Every can, box and bag of food you bring will supply nutritious meals to homeless men, women and children. Every little bit helps! But for those competing to win the guest blog opportunity, we will be measuring pounds of food donated and will determine our winners by the individual, group or company that donates the most food by pounds. So remember, the more you bring, the better chance you have of become an “Orlando ‘Can’ Care Challenge” winner!

Have more questions? Feel free to contact us. And good luck!