This week, I spoke with Michelle Jones, a long-time contributing member of the Community Lunch Box Society. We covered the various challenges, and successes the CLB faces, and her thoughts in general about what this positive initiative means to her.
Michelle stated that some of her duties as a director include helping with volunteering, fundraising activities, attending monthly meetings, having voting rights within the Executive Board and advocating for the program throughout the Whitecourt community.
Jones stated, “As the result of one idea, several others have resulted from it. I love the fact that this program champions positive initiatives and is providing to the community, particularly the students in an open and inclusive way.
She further added “I think one of the biggest challenge the Lunch Box faces is public awareness, to get information out to the public at large as to where our revenue sources come from and where they go. I think sometimes there are misconceptions throughout the community.”
The Bottle Recycling Program now has a presence throughout where people may drop off their bottles in visibly marked blue bins. The money made from these bottles is a major contributing factor to the purchasing of apples, last year alone we bought 45,000 apples as a part of our many food programs.
She believes that one of the biggest accomplishments that the Lunch Box achieved is the fact that the volunteers that help out are diversified and come from all walks of life in our community, from local businesses to private individuals they are all involved in a meaningful way.
This diversified and community centered forward thinking organization continues to strive towards providing the community an invaluable service that breaks down the stigmatization of asking for help and is a major advocate for supporting those with barriers by providing part-time meaningful employment opportunities. This actively reinforces good work ethic as well as marketable skills.
Michelle Jones is the embodiment of what a volunteer should be. We are lucky to have her on the board. Her strong conviction of public service and helping others broadens our horizons and does this unique, one of kind program great credit.