Heart-Shaped Box

I have a heart-shaped wooden box on my dresser.  Every evening I empty the change from my pocket into the box.  This is a habit that my father taught me.  He would do this every evening too.  “My savings account,” he would say. “Little things,” he’d start to say as he’d shake the coins in his pocket, “do add up.”   He was so dedicated to this practice that during his day he wouldn’t spend the coins in his pocket.  He’d take out bills to pay for every thing.  If it cost $1.26, he would take out two ones instead of using the coins in his pocket.  “More savings,” he’d teach.

I’m the same way.  I usually end up with several coins in my pocket at the end of everyday.  The box gets filled pretty fast.  Sure quarters are grabbed and used on occasion but mostly the coins are left alone to build up.  I wait until there is something special to do with the money.  A fund-raiser at school, the neighborhood kids collecting money for some event or other special appeals that I hear about.

I received such an appeal the other day from one of my favorite groups, Open Arms.

Good afternoon!

I am very proud and excited to be going to South Africa to deliver food parcels next month.

To recognize World AIDS Day, which is December 1, Open Arms will distribute hundreds of parcels to people at the JL Zwane Community Centre in Guguletu, South Africa. The parcels include staples such as flour, beans, chicken, and rice – enough food to feed a family for a month. They will go to members of the HIV/AIDS Support Group, orphans and vulnerable children, and other sick and elderly members in a community where virtually everyone has been affected by the disease.

I am asking for your help. If you can sponsor a parcel, 100% of your donation will be used to buy the food and supplies needed for the deliveries. I also invite each of you to write a note that I will include with that parcel, giving you the chance to send a message directly from your family here to a family in South Africa. The cost of each parcel is $50.  Here’s a link right to our website. Your gift will make a substantial impact to people in Guguletu. (Parcels are also nice gifts to give in honor of someone’s birthday or in place of a holiday present.)

Food is something I am very passionate about. I am honored to have the opportunity to deliver your parcel to those in need, half way across the world.

Together, we can do for the people of Guguletu what we do in Minneapolis/St. Paul for our clients every day.

Thank you for considering it!

Asei Tendle

Assistant Food Services Director

Open Arms of Minnesota


I’m empting out the box.  I’m going to buy a couple of food parcels.   I wanted to share this with you.  Maybe you’ve got some coins in your pocket.  Maybe you have that box on the dresser too.  Now is the time to empty it out.  Maybe our pocket change can add up to many food parcels.

Check out the link above and read about this amazing program.  If you can contribute look for the heart-shaped box on the action table.  Throw a few coins in over the next couple of weeks.  Remember, “little things do add up.”



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