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Poulsbo Lions/Raab Foundation Bellringer buys Christmas dinner for 100 families
POULSBO — Sherri Burch had gotten to bed at 2 a.m. after working a late shift at UW Hospital, and here she was at 7, red cap on head, filling a grocery cart — and smiling.
“This is to me what it’s all about,” she said at Albertsons in Poulsbo Village. “So, sometimes, you just gotta get out of bed.”
Burch and more than 30 other Poulsbo Host Lions Club members were at Albertson’s, Central Market and Red Apple Market before dawn Dec. 19, selecting items for Christmas dinners as part of the Poulsbo Lions/Raab Foundation Bellringer Fund Christmas food basket program.
Within a couple of hours, enough food for Christmas dinner for 100 households would go from aisle to carts to registers to boxes, each box labeled with a number corresponding to a family’s name. Each market stored the boxes, to be picked by the families.
The program is a well-organized effort.
Names of families for the Christmas food basket program were provided by North Kitsap Fishline. Jim Schoettler of the Lions Club gives the stores a list of all the food items needed, and the stores stage the items to make filling the boxes earlier. At Albertsons, several carts were filled and at registers by the time Mariah Carey finished “All I Want for Christmas Is You.” Each store customarily discounts the bill and contributes food items.
A similar scene would take place later in the day at St. Olaf’s Church, when St. Vincent de Paul accepted food donations for Christmas food baskets to be picked up the next day.
“The thrill of helping people,” Lion Dennis Tesch said of his motivation for helping in the food basket program the last 17 years or so. “It makes you feel good, and that’s what Lions is all about — helping people.
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Donations are accepted year-round for the Poulsbo Lions/Raab Foundation Bellringer Fund. Mail to P.O. Box 1244, Poulsbo 98370. Donations can also be delivered to the North Kitsap Herald, 19351 8th Ave., Suite 106, Poulsbo. Donations are tax-deductible.
The fund was founded by the late Frank and Mabel Raab — he was mayor from 1960-69 — as a way for neighbors to help each other during emergencies. The Poulsbo Noon Lions Club administers the fund for the Raab Foundation.
The Poulsbo Lions/Raab Foundation Bellringer Fund turns the funds over to North Kitsap Fishline and St. Vincent de Paul, which use the money to provide food, emergency shelter and emergency financial assistance to North Kitsap residents in need. Donations are tax-deductible.
The Poulsbo Lions/Raab Foundation keeps $5,000 in reserve, to use in the event of a “major catastrophe” during the year, chairman John Macdonald said.
Here are this week’s donors.
— Ed and Sandy Habecker: $500, in memory of Buster, Thor, Bernie & Dorothy.
— Dorothy Ridgeway: $50, in memory of Bill & Virginia Minton.
— Irving Spellman: $50, in memory of my wife, Eleanor.
—Dale and Beverly Anderson: $100.
— Patrick Osler: $100.
— Douglas and Leann Mong: $100, in loving memory of Fritz Brost, Harld & Mary Mong.
— Donna Svarthumle: $30, in memory of Ray, Ozzie & Palma.
— Diane Fitzpatrick: $200.
— Anonymous: $100, in loving memory of Larry Nelson & Alex O’Handley.
— Ronald and Dorothy Easterday: $100.
— Merna: $20, in memory of Ivan Nordstrom.
— Mike and Marlene Hattrick: $50, in memory of Al & Margaret Brooks.
— Sandi: $50, in memory of loved ones.
— John and Sylvia Castleman: $40, in loving memory of daughter, Vicky.
— Brenda Sutton Houser and William Sutton: $100.
— Stockton and Janice Forrest: $50.
— John Macdonald: $100. Army Navy Game 2013. A bet worth losing.
— Jan Seifert: $100. Sharing Christmas.
— Sue Guldjord: $100, given in memory of Bruce Guldjord.
— Teddy Bear Coalition: $2,000. A chorus of 26 teddy bears, of all sizes and colors, is bringing wishes for a very Merry Christmas.
— Richard L. Meyers: $200, in memory of Camille Meyers.
— Herbert and Elda Armstrong: $100, in memory of family & friends.
— Mary Swoboda and James Groh: $300.
— From Army vet Jay Dahlquist and Sandi: $100. Paying off $100 Army/Navy game challenge.
— Anonymous: $300, in honor of Pete, Steve & Mike, and Ethan, Natalie, Henry, Bridget & Isaac.
— Anonymous: $100, in memory of Bob Chamberlain.
— The Cox Family: $500, in memory of Georgia Cox.
— Big Valley Family: $1,000.
— Anonymous: $250, in appreciation of Lou & Anita Puzon.
— Anonymous: $250, in appreciation of Vern & Nita Johnson.
— Anonymous: $125, in appreciation of Barbara Grout.
— Anonymous: $125, in appreciation of Berta & Scott Oliphant.
— Anonymous: $250. Thank you to the caring and helpful staff at the Silverdale Retina Clinic.
To-date total: $17,960