Earlier this week my husband and I enjoyed our annual Secret Santa Day. We choose agencies where we can remain anonymous while doing what little we can to help whoever can use our small gifts. It is a great lot of fun for us and hopefully for the people who benefit.
One thing though made us very sad. When we took our donation to one agency's food hamper collection station we were shown 2 large tables overflowing with food products that were all expired. Some of the best before dates were from several years ago!
We were appalled. Once again the attitude toward the poor is displayed by a blatant disregard for their health and safety. The agency involved now has to foot the bill to have these many items hauled away to the dump.
If you won't eat something because you know it is old and no longer safe to eat, why on earth would you take that product and expect someone else to eat it?? Would it not be easier to toss that food into your own garbage than to haul it across town and then expect the charitable agencies to dump it in the garbage for you?
What a slap in the face for people who face hunger on a daily basis, so often through no fault of their own. What a lot of extra work for the people sorting and packing the hampers to have to deal with your out of date grocery products. It is unfair all the way around.
Sometimes it is wiser to refrain from giving when the heart is not in line with the reason for giving and there is no respect from the giver toward the recipient.
As someone who used to have to receive food gifts from those who either felt coerced into giving, or were simply trying to clean out their own cupboards of expired foods, opened and half used packages of rancid food items, because it was faster and easier than hauling the stuff to the dump, I can only say I have rarely experienced anything more degrading. If you wanted to let me know how much you disrespected me because I could not earn enough to eat at that time, you succeeded in grand manner.
I have one small piece of advice for you if that is the kind of donation you would make to the poor:
Just. Don't. Bother.