October 16th, 2017


This week is National Food Bank Week, and with the holidays starting next month and the holiday spirit already beginning, it’s the perfect time to start giving back. Every day in Marina del Rey, we look around at our gorgeous scenery, dive into great activities and indulge in amazing restaurants without thinking twice. And it can be pretty easy to forget there are a lot of people around us who aren’t quite as fortunate. Check out this statistic: In the U.S., 1 in 8 people are struggling with hunger. That’s staggering.

But guess what? You can totally make a difference — and that’s what National Food Bank Week is all about. Pitching in and helping Marina del Rey and the rest of the Westside wipe out the hunger problem. It doesn’t have to take a lot of time or effort. Just do something — every little bit can make an impact.

Here are a few easy ways to help.



Go through your cupboards or head up to the store for non-perishable items to donate. The most needed items include canned tuna or chicken, peanut butter, canned fruit in water, low-sugar cereal, canned soups and stews, holiday foods (i.e. canned yams & boxed stuffing), canola or olive oil, pasta, packaged dinners (i.e. Mac & Cheese), low-sodium canned vegetables, and granola bars. ALSO – jarred baby food, infant formula, crackers/teething biscuits and diapers are big essentials.

Bring your goods to these nearby organizations!

Westside Food Bank
1710 22nd St., Santa Monica
Accepts donations Monday through Friday from 7 am to 5 pm
Visit their website for more info.

World Harvest LA
3100 Venice Blvd., Los Angeles
Visit their website for more info.



Does your company want to get involved with charitable organizations? If they do, there are some great opportunities to check out.

Ocean Park Community Center’s Full Plates Program

Your work can partner up with OPCC to provide a full week of breakfast, lunch, and dinner to Westside neighbors in need. For a donation of just $2,329 — 3,570 meals will be supplied through the Full Plates program. Imagine the impact that will have for a family. Plus, let your company know that they’ll be featured on the OPCC website and social media! (Who doesn’t love a little free publicity?) OPCC is already booking groups for November through January so contact them soon for more information. Call (310) 264-6646 or email

Volunteer as a Team Building Exercise

Westside Food Bank is pleased as punch to have volunteers helping with food sorting at their Santa Monica warehouse. And it’s just the sort of activity that brings co-workers together and inspires real teamwork. Since all ages are welcome, the company can even make it a family-friendly event (it’s a pretty cool way to teach your kids about the value of volunteerism!). For information on upcoming food-sorting events, send a message to the program coordinator.



Both Westside Food Bank and World Harvest welcome anyone interested in managing a food drive. Just put up a sign at your apartment complex, your child’s school or even at work (well, get permission first), put out some containers for collection, and watch the drive kick into high gear. Seriously, it’s amazing how much people will donate when you make it convenient.

Westside Food Bank will provide giant barrels for food collection, as well as PDFs for Food Drive Posters. Just remember to schedule at least a week in advance so they can arrange drop off and pick up of the barrels. You can even request the food drive online — making it super easy to start.

World Harvest is more low-key with their food drive setup. While they do provide barrels and containers if you need them, they actually suggest using your own cardboard boxes to collect the donated items. Also, if you have the means to deliver all of the donations to the food bank site yourself – that’s another plus for the organization. Of course, you can request a pickup if there’s no other alternative — there just may be a wait.



This is the 21st century food drive. All online, fast, and effective. Just send your co-workers and friends a link to Westside Food Bank’s virtual food drive. From there — it’s as simple as clicking “add to cart” and choosing payment options.  They have a ton of choices, from cases of canned goods to fresh produce, dairy and eggs, and grains. Plus, everything is sent directly to the food bank! Easy, peasy good deed for the day.


Are you ready to make an impact for National Food Bank Week? Let us know how you choose to help!