The Denver Bar Association’s Community Action Network (CAN) Committee sponsored the 16th Annual “Roll Out the Barrels” Food Drive in April to benefit Metro Caring. As Denver’s leading hunger-relief organization, Metro Caring’s mission is to provide nutritious food to hungry families and individuals while promoting health and self-sufficiency. This year’s food drive was more critical than ever: Metro Caring opened a brand-new Hunger Relief Center, which will grow the amount of people they can help and the services they can provide. The Hunger Relief Center features a fresh-food market where people have access to healthy foods. In fact, more than 60% of the food given to participants is fresh! Think fruits, vegetables, eggs, milk, meat, cheese, bread, and more. In addition to providing nutritious food, Metro Caring helps address the root causes of hunger and malnutrition through education, self-sufficiency resources, and health services. Programming focuses on food safety, healthy cooking, and optimal nutritional choices despite a limited budget—information aimed to combat obesity among food-insecure populations. The Hunger Relief Center expands space for this essential programming, with an Education Center, Teaching Kitchen, Greenhouse, Rooftop Learning Garden, and Children’s Nutrition Center.
Readers may be familiar with the DBA’s CAN Committee, which provides opportunities to reach beyond our legal community to the greater Denver community, through service projects such as Roll Out the Barrels. After DBA President John Vaught highlighted the good we do as a legal community (see “From the President,” The Docket, Jan. 2015 p. 6–7 or visit dbadocket.org), even more DBA members stepped up to make this year’s drive a huge success! Thirty-seven law firms and organizations joined to help “stock the shelves” for the new Hunger Relief Center. Together, we collected nearly $47,750 in food and funds.
As lawyers, many of us deal with complex business litigation, multi-party arbitration proceedings, or highly technical patent cases. It is such a simple thing, however, to offer help to hungry families and individuals through the food drive. We also know that lawyers are competitive by nature! To that end, the winners of the friendly competition are:
Of course, the real “winners” are the individuals and families served by Metro Caring. According to Hunger Free Colorado, more than 25% of working families in Colorado do not have enough food to eat by the end of the month. “It’s heartbreaking to think of children in our community going to bed hungry at night,” said Ryan Galanaugh, Metro Caring’s Program Director. “By contributing to Metro Caring, the Denver legal community has shown its commitment to helping hungry families avoid hunger and move toward self-sufficiency.”
Metro Caring relies on 170 volunteers weekly. If you would like to learn about the ways you can help throughout the year, visit metrocaring.org.
Arax R. Corn is an Assistant Attorney General at the Colorado Department of Law. Arax has been a CAN committee member since joining the DBA, and she chaired this year’s Roll Out the Barrels food drive. She may be reached at email@example.com.