This morning John and I went to meet with the lady in charge of donations at Matthew 25 Ministries. They are a large humanitarian relief organization in our area that we worked with before when we did hurricane relief. They have warehouses full of all sorts of items that corporations donate and they then ship it out in any way they can to the world's poorest. It's a good thing.
We discovered that it would cost us $170.00 per pallet of items to take to Pine Ridge with us. The corporations donate the items to Matthew 25 Ministries but they do not ship them to them for free so the fee is to cover their expenses. Understandable. It does cost to get stuff, even free stuff, to the places it needs to go. The problem is of course money. Do we have it?
Right now, things are up in the air and I have no idea how they will fall. There's just no way to outguess this kind of thing. There are a lot of unknowns ... the cost of fuel can go anywhere by July and can vary state to state.
We have a huge food donation from a local company, but will they really come through? Probably. They always have in the past and I've no reason to doubt them this time. But, what if ... a lot can change between now and July 27th. Last year just 5 days before we left, this company knew nothing of a donation that we had been told we had coming from them. I've learned better than to freak out at stuff like that. The first year that kind of thing would have thrown me into a tizzy but I just take it in stride now. I expect it. Which is why I'm reluctant to count my chickens before they hatch on this Matthew 25 donation thing.
Here is how it stands now....
We have a 24 foot truck rented to haul all of our stuff - food for the week for us and 150 kids each day, 150 backpacks full of school supplies, VBS materials, 27 suitcases, 27 sleeping bags, 27 air mattresses, a freezer that we're taking to the mission, and whatever donated items we can squeeze in. I'm guessing, just guessing that we may have 9 foot of space left over for the donated items.
Rumor has it that someone in our church has offered a company truck of theirs for us to take extra donated items. That rumor is likely true but the person has not mentioned it to me yet.
Even if they did let us borrow their truck, can we afford the $170.00 per pallet fee to fill it up? I've no idea. Or will we be able to afford gas for 3 vans, one 24 foot box truck and another truck? I've no idea about that either.
I budgeted for food and we may get most of that donated which would mean that we could afford the $170.00 per pallet fee - or we may not get the food donation after all. Remember, I don't count chickens until I see them hatch. A lot can change in time. (why do I feel like I'm repeating myself - oh, I am)
We can probably pay for 4-5 pallets to fill the remainder of the 24 foot rented truck. That's probably a safe gamble. But it would be great to take more if we could and we may be able to - or we may not. And we probably will not know for certain until the last week or so before we leave. That means I'll be trying to juggle and coordinate all of this at the last minute.
Oh the joy.
It really is a joy. Really. I love the unknown. I love the excitement. That's probably not a good thing. It probably says something about my mental condition or my personality or something,, but I love it.
- My passion is helping others defend themselves and their families. I am an NRA Certified pistol instructor, a NRA Chief Range Safety Officer, leader of TWAW Shooting Chapters - North Cincinnati, and the state leader of TWAW Shooting Chapters - Ohio. I also have a heart for the Lakota people and lead mission teams to the Pine Ridge Reservation each year, am founder and director of Backpacks For Pine Ridge,, and do various volunteer work in my own community. My greatest joy is being a grandma and hanging out with my husband of 30+ years.