Capital Area Food Bank

On Saturday, October 28, 2017, my mom drove me to the Capital Area Food Bank in D.C. I was running a few minutes late, so I rushed and entered through the volunteering area. I took a quick glance of the room for any Potomac shirt. I found Caitlyn first and she led me to the other girls: Allison, Xuan Anh, Anna, Hong, and of course, Tr. Chau.

LD Seniors at CAFB warehouse – Photo by Tran-Chau Le

We all followed the guide to the back of the warehouse and he explained our first task to us. We were to bag canned foods, grains, and other foods that would serve the needy community in Montgomery County, MD. We were practically a human conveyor belt. All of the volunteers stood in a line to get a plastic bag and then walked passed different stations where the staff put different foods into our bags. Then, we tied the bags up placed them into a big cardboard box, went back in line and cycled through it again. Once we finished, we went back to the gathering room for a water break, while the guide and the center staff complete the setup for our next task. After the break, the guide called us back and we were taken to an organizing room. Everybody paired up and were assigned a food to take off the big conveyer belt that spanned the entire room.

I partnered with Caitlyn and we were assigned to canned meats and seafood. The canned food started to arrive and we began sorting. At first, it wasn’t so fun because there wasn’t a lot of food to sort.

Scouts with 2 bags full of groceries – Photo by Tran-Chau Le

But then the food started to come in faster and in bigger quantities. My favorite memory was when there was a corn apocalypse. Allison and Xuan Anh were assigned to organize all the corn, but there was so much that four of us had to help them. The corn was coming so fast and all of our hands were racing but it was really fun.

I had a great experience learning about the process that comes after donating food and how it takes a lot of work to organize and prepare food bags for those in need. When I donated canned food I never thought about where it would go, but thanks to this event, now I know.

The Seniors at CAFB – Photo by Tran-Chau Le

Additionally, I had the opportunity to bond with my troop. As with all fun senior events, we ended with our traditional trip to Chipotle. This is definitely something I would do again!