May 2018 Community Champion Jeff England
As one way to highlight the good deeds and hard work of our neighbors, my office features a “Community Champion” throughout the year. The champion can be an individual, a group, an organization or a business that makes us proud to be a part of the community we live in.
Today we are announcing Jeff England, director of the Trinity County Food Bank as this month’s community champion. On any given day, Jeff can be found driving his own truck close to 700 miles on winding roads every week to feed the county’s hungry residents, many living in very remote areas.
In California, one out of 10 people are food insecure; in Northern California one out of five people are food insecure. Rural Trinity County residents are more likely to go without food than anywhere else in California.
Communities in Trinity can be more than a two-hour drive from a grocery store and the mostly mountainous terrain is not good farming land, so there are few farmers in the county. People rely on Jeff and his truck. Every month, he delivers a box of food each to as many as 2,500 households – that’s one out of every five households. Along with canned goods and packaged items, Jeff also delivers vegetables and, when possible, frozen fish. It’s not easy to provide this service. With a small operating budget and limited refrigerator and freezer space, Jeff’s selfless commitment to providing food keeps people healthy and alive.
Jeff’s volunteer work comes from his own experience of hunger. He tells the story of the first meal he had in a soup kitchen and the kindness they showed him, sending him home with some canned goods. He has learned how important it is not to judge people. Everyone has to eat, and everyone deserves access to food.
If you have a recommendation for a "Community Champion," please send their name, along with information about their good work, to firstname.lastname@example.org or call (707) 463-5770. Photo courtesy of KQED Public Radio