Hundreds of local Boy Scouts canvassed several Amarillo neighborhoods Saturday morning, collecting money and food donations door-to-door during the 2023 Good Turn program. The annual event benefiting the High Plains Food Bank is traditionally one of the largest spring food drives in the Texas Panhandle.
According to Michael Lopez, Golden Eagle District Executive Director, Boy Scouts in Golden Eagle District prepared 72,840 meals last year, up from 13,862 meals. This year’s goal is 100,000 meals collected, with the involvement of new partners in Canyon, Hereford and Friona to continue their collections.
Zack Wilson, executive director of the High Plains Food Bank (HPFB), said in a press release, “Among the Girl Scout Law are the characteristics of helpfulness, friendliness and kindness. … These are the qualities Golden Spread Council Scouts demonstrate each year with the Scouting for Food Drive. We are very grateful that our partnership continues this year to help individuals in their time of greatest need.”
During the event, approximately 50 soldiers traveled door-to-door collecting canned goods and shelf-stable food items to benefit HPFB. Some items collected include the food bank’s greatest needs for food, such as peanut butter, pasta/sauce, boxed dinners and canned goods including soups, fruits, vegetables and meats.
“Their goal of 100,000 meals would be a long way for us. The more we collect here, the more we are able to help our neighbors and the more we can help the people in our community who need it the most,” said Živorad Filipović, director of marketing and communications of the food bank.
Filipović added that the increase in inflation and the abolition of certain benefits after the pandemic led to an increase in the number of community members who seek help from the food bank. The Scouts’ donations not only help the food bank meet that need and start their spring fundraiser, but also teach the Scouts how to give back.
According to HPFB, every dollar donated provides up to 13 meals for children, seniors and families in our communities. As of 10 a.m. Saturday, the Boy Scouts had already raised more than half of their goal with monetary donations alone, accounting for more than 58,000 meals. After the donations were handed in, it was estimated that the Scouts had raised more than £8,000, up from last year’s total of £5,000. , Canyon Cares Food Pantry and Hereford Food Pantry. Those donations will remain with each of those agencies for distribution to their clients.
Brandon Foglesong, Scoutmaster for BSA Troop 62, talked about what the annual event means to Scouts to give back each year.
“I believe we had about 40 soldiers participating last year, and this year we have about 50, and we have several drop-off locations in several different cities, all of which will count toward our goal,” Foglesong said.
“Every dollar here equates to 13 meals, so 100,000 pounds of food is going to be huge in creating that many more potential meals. I’ve been a part of this myself for the last 18 years. I’ve seen the impact it has on the community and these kids, and we’re enjoying it, so it’s a win-win – our kids are working to make an impact in their community and for the food bank to receive these much-needed goods,” Foglesong added.
Final results for total donations will be announced on Monday and will include cash donations.
For those wishing to donate food, items will be accepted at the food bank’s distribution center, located on Ross St. 815, or in any other related warehouse. For more information or to make a monetary donation to HPFB, visit them online at https://www.hpfb.org/.