Monday, December 27, 2010

The Loaves & Fishes Grinch that stole Christmas

Loaves & Fishes — the soup kitchen with a $1.7 million warehouse to store stale pastries — didn’t give out $5 McDonald’s giftcards on Christmas to those who came for its Christmas meal.

At its website, you can see that the McDonald’s card tops the list of those things Loaves & Fishes asked to be donated1 as “Christmas Stocking Giveaways.” The first line of text reads: “Each year, as part of our holiday meal, Loaves & Fishes offers each of our guests a Christmas stocking.”

Now, what people are wondering is What happened to the giftcards that Loaves & Fishes begged to have donated, but weren't in the stockings and are now — poof! — gone?

Did Loaves & Fishes misdirect its donors and take the valued items to use for another purpose? [Yeah, like, what else is new in LibbyLand.] Did the cards go to employees?

I have been given the information that hundreds of cards were received or paid for at Loaves & Fishes' administrative office. What was done with the cards, which had a specific designated use, is a mystery, and another brier in the hide of often-frustrated users of Loaves & Fishes’ services.

It is known that homeless people are often enticed to "volunteer" to do tasks at the Loaves & Fishes facility and are "tipped" [that is, paid] with McDonald's cards. Such tasks include offloading trucks that arrive with donations to be placed in the warehouse.

A best guess is that Loaves & Fishes' top administrator took all the cards as future "tips" for the warehouse manager and other employees to use to, you know, grease operations.  What donors are led to believe be damned.
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1 In case the page of the link is disappeared, like the McDonald's cards, I've posted a copy-paste job of the webpage here.

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