Many of you started the year off by showing us support through your giving across Amazon Smile, and PayPal. A little bit does indeed go a long way. We currently have 12 friends supporting our charity through their Amazon shopping. And, with no additional cost to these individuals, we raised $58.11 for Snacks in Sacks throughout 2022. That's enough for 25 snack bags!
February’s Virtual Snack Bag Challenge was a success again this year. We had more than 20 families participate and fill a collective 1,038 snack bags. The Wheeler Kindergarten Team also put together 282 complete bags during their kindness parties AND donated more than 450 extra items for us to include in future snack bags. We were also blessed by a $200 donation from the Lion's Club of Middletown during the February Love Challenge.
In addition to the above total, St. Martha School hosted a collection drive and donated winter gear for our outreach groups to distribute. We also received nearly 200 snack bags from Sullivan University Student Society of Health Systems Pharmacy. We have loved watching our support network grow even more this year!
Snacks in Sacks received a call from Kept, Inc. asking for support. Kept is a nonprofit representative payee organization, which means that they manage finances for clients who are not able to do that for themselves. They have about 240 clients and about 25 of them are homeless. They requested some snack bags to share with their homeless and food insecure clients. We happily partnered with them, thanks to the provisions of our faithful contributors.
Jessica Wolf and her Head Start colleagues assembled and dropped off snack bags; furthermore, we received a bountiful number of snack bags from Ahrens Work Transition Program.
Wheeler Elementary’s Student Council hosted a collection drive after school. With the help of their coordinator, Carmelita Weakley, students set up collection boxes inside the school for the bus riders and collected donations from Wheeler families during the afternoon car rider pickup. The group collected a total of 2,048 snack items in total. Awesome job, Wheeler! Thank you so much for your continued support. We love that you love Snacks in Sacks as much as we do. Thank you for leading by example!
Thank you to the LG&E and KU Foundation for supporting our work! We are so grateful for the Community Impact Grant. We were able to send more supplies to our partners within the Ahrens Work Transition Program.
Fern Creek United Methodist Church welcomed us into their Fellowship Hall for another bag filling event. Thank you so much to everyone who sent donations via our wish list, brought donations to the event, and all those who volunteered to assemble bags. We were able to make 404 bags and 90 peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, all of which were donated to FCUMC Street Reach.
The Ahrens Work Transition Program blessed us with another year of faithful service! Amanda Jones and her students worked diligently from March-May to transform donated snack items into ready-to-distribute goodie bags: 1,794 in total. We appreciate all of our Amazon Wishlist and PayPal donors that ensured the success of this collaboration!
Snacks in Sacks received a lovely thank you note from Patty Laurence, Care Coordinator with Kept, Inc. that we'd like to share with our supporters. Helping the houseless and food insecure is a group effort - and YOU are our group.
“[I] just want to say thank you for the snacks in sacks. I recently visited a housed client who was overjoyed to receive a couple bags of snacks. He said I am so thankful and whoever put these together cares. Another client of Kept's, who is homeless, had not eaten all day and was beyond grateful. Your organization is doing great things for the community. Thank you!"
June brought a few new challenges for our group as our regular supply of JIF peanut butter cups had been recalled due to the potential risk of Salmonella. This change in inventory taught us to trust in our village to help us make ends meet. And, from increased monetary donations to groups hosting events to drop off assembled bags, we were able to supply the continued demand for snack bags.
Cane Run Elementary Student Council (under the leadership of Professional School Counselor, Aisha Walker) collected supplies for Snacks in Sacks as part of their community service outreach. We love seeing the faces behind all the community service students!
We made 1,426 snack bags for those experiencing houselessness in our community at our July event. Thank you to the St. Martha 8th grade confirmation class for hosting, and thanks to all who donated and volunteered! We couldn't do it without your support.
We continued to support our outreach partners, including Fern Creek United Methodist Church's Street Reach and Kept, Inc. - we love that we can support the organizations that are on the front lines serving individuals who need assistance. We continued to receive fantastic support from our community, and as always, 100% of your donations went to making snack bags. Snacks in Sacks is an all-volunteer organization!
September was an AWESOME month for company grants. UPS matched, dollar for dollar, a $1000 donation. And Snacks in Sacks received a $6000 grant from Spectrum during a Community Grants Event! Spectrum employees also assembled 200 snacks bags for our organization. Trisha Drake, Founder (left), and Sarah M. Lawrence, President and Executive Director (right), attended.
We were approved to received donations for the nonprofit through Kroger Community Rewards. If you'd like to support Snacks in Sacks by linking your Kroger Rewards Loyalty Card to our Charity, simple follow these instructions. Login to your Kroger account, go to My Account and select "View Community Rewards" towards the bottom. You can either search for Snacks in Sacks Inc. by name or use the code BL609 and then click "Enroll".
Thank you St. Edward 3/4 volleyball team for making and dropping off snack bags. We LOVE when young people get involved in giving back. The earlier we help teach the next generation to give back to our community, the more we all benefit!
Our October event resulted in 976 snack bags and a great time with both new friends and familiar faces!
Our President and Executive Director, Sarah M. Lawrence, earned a $1000 donation through her company's Community Impact Award program. She was also awarded the Visionary Award, which came with a $500 donation and KLG gave SIS a $2,500 donation to sponsor 1,000 snack bags and help us carry on with our work.
Huge thanks to our friends at Down Syndrome of Louisville who held their annual ThanksGIVE party and made 350 snack bags for those experiencing houselessness in our community!
We'd also like to thank St. Edward Girl Scouts, our friends at Ahrens Work Transition Program, and Wheeler Elementary faculty and staff for hosting events. Additionally, the Routt family coordinated a bag filling event with St. Michael Catholic Church families, Mom's club, and GLOW religious education. Altogether, these groups collected supplies and filled 1,585 bags for houseless outreach.
In November we welcomed 3 new passionate board members to our team: Melissa Routt, Heather Fagan, and Jennifer Jollie. We feel honored to have them join the group.
December was a big month for team and group events. We’d love to highlight a few. Seneca High School Marine Corps Junior ROTC, travel softball teams Fusion 09-Herald and Louisville Diamonds Fastpitch 2011, the Louisville Kings Select 2027 Lacrosse Team, and LHC Cub Scouts Pack 175 from St. Edward donated a total of 823 snack bags to Snacks in Sacks.
December’s event was also a HUGE success made possible by awesome teamwork. SIS put out a call for winter essentials in addition to snack item donations. We also rescued 40 pounds worth of food through Kentucky Harvest (primarily fruit cups and applesauce cups), which was bagged during this event. Street Reach also served 180 individual milks cartons (that would not be fresh after the student's winter break) to those in need. Thank you Wheeler Elementary and Kentucky Harvest for supporting our mission!
St. Martha's community and Troop 194 sponsored our event and asked for troop families to bring donations to their Christmas party in preparation for the event. Nearly 90 volunteers came together at the holidays to fill 1,782 snacks bags with snack food.
The Kindergarten Team at Wheeler Elementary taught a lesson on giving to those in need after reading The Mitten Tree to students. The teachers hosted a collection drive for winter weather gear and placed donated items on (and below) their classroom trees. It was a warm gesture. We also received a generous donation of 750 pairs of socks from Share the Love Homeless Outreach.
The final count of cold weather supplies collected: 958 pairs of socks, 216 pairs of gloves, 5 beanie hats, a scarf, 108 packs of hand warmers, and 60 pairs of toe warmers. Outstanding! Thank you to those who donated and to those who helped collect.
Several hundred pairs of adult socks were delivered to Jeffersontown Area Ministries; socks and snacks bags were given to Keep Louisville Warm and Jacob's Ladder Outreach; socks, gloves, and snack bags were donated to The Forgotten Louisville; and FCUMC Street Reach received the remaining winter essential gear for outreach. Additionally, Snacks in Sacks brought 300 snack bags to a hotel where many of our houseless friends were staying safe during the dangerous period of weather.
After feedback from the youth who sponsored our December event, we have registered our non-profit with Venmo and are now able to accept monetary donations through this convenient platform. Simply search for us by name - Snacks in Sacks, Inc. or username - @snacksinsacks if you'd like to support us through Venmo. You will see the blue checkmark designating us as a verified charity, our mission statement, and pictures from our events.
The need is year round, and our community has supported us each month of the year. How quickly do snacks bags go? Our partner Street Reach alone can distribute more than 2,000 in six weeks!!! So, how many bags did we make this year?
Our year-end total number of snack bags...drumroll, please...11,764!!! That's a 503 bag increase over 2021's amazing grand total - WOW! We had such a strong and impactful finish to our year.
We are beyond grateful for ALL of the support we have received throughout the year. We tried to mention, by name, as many as we were able. Some of our monthly donors prefer to live under the radar. We get it. Still, we see you - and we appreciate you!!! And so do the outreach teams that depend on us to supply them with goods to distribute. It's been a great year. Farewell, 2022.