Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett, Milwaukee County Executive Scott Walker and Waukesha County Executive Daniel P. Vrakas have all proclaimed Saturday, Oct. 2, 2010 as SHARE Day.
SHARE is a nonprofit volunteer-run food buying club based in Butler, WI that welcomes everyone to save 30–50% on groceries. This year SHARE celebrates its 25th anniversary of service to the community.
The local elected officials have all issued proclamations that encourage citizens to join in celebrating SHARE volunteers for their accomplishments and dedication as they continue their efforts to improve communities across Wisconsin.
Every month more than 1,000 volunteers in more than 100 communities throughout the state make SHARE possible.
Emeritus SHARE Board Member Bill Banach, who has been involved for all 25 years, said, “In the early 80s there was a need for the service in Milwaukee,” and that is why he became involved. Bev Krass is the volunteer team leader at the SHARE site at St. Josaphat in Milwaukee.
She said, “SHARE was a good thing for my church and for its people.” SHARE would like to thank all the wonderful volunteers who give so much time to their communities through SHARE.
When SHARE began in 1985 the need for the program was widespread, and now the need for families to stretch their budgets is equal if not greater. In its last fiscal year alone, SHARE members saved over $1.5 million on groceries.
“Even after people get back to work after a lay-off, they are having trouble finding jobs with comparable pay. People want and need alternatives to help their own resources work better for them,” said Paulette Flynn, SHARE’s executive director. “SHARE can uniquely respond to the economic crisis because everyone is welcome to use SHARE. There are no fees or eligibility requirements to purchase food through the organization.”
SHARE has come a long way in the last 25 years. In May 2008, SHARE deepened its service to the community through Mobile Market, a program that provides access to fresh fruits, vegetables, meats and other grocery items in Metro Milwaukee neighborhoods that previously lacked affordable, convenient access. With Mobile Market, families can purchase items on the spot with no pre-ordering requirements.
SHARE’s goals for the future center around becoming more convenient for more people. Executive Director Flynn says, “SHARE needs to keep growing so that more and more people who need SHARE will discover it.” Another important goal for the organization is to use more locally grown food. “The more we can support our own community, the better,” says Flynn.
Building community is also central to SHARE’s mission, and by gathering people together for common work whose paths might not otherwise meet, new connections are made, new community leaders born and more families are served with care and compassion.
SHARE invites the public to get involved either by purchasing food, volunteering with SHARE, or by making a donation to the SHARE Cares Food Fund to help feed families in need. For more information, call 800-548-2124 or visit www.sharewi.org.