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Teen group gears up to collect for food pantry

Winthrop Harbor-12/01/12 Sat./Old Darby Ln Roberts Rd.
BriannWhite 17 Winthrop Harbor handing out bags door door Saturday Winthrop Harbor.
| Joe Shuman~For

Winthrop Harbor-12/01/12, Sat./Old Darby Ln and Roberts Rd. Brianna White, 17, of Winthrop Harbor handing out bags door to door Saturday in Winthrop Harbor. | Joe Shuman~For Sun-Times Media

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BORDERLINE LEOS CLUB

Members of the Borderline Leos Club are working toward stocking the food pantry at North Point Christian Church in Winthrop Harbor.

On Saturday, the community youth organization made up of teens went door to door to deposit bags to be filled, and handed out letters explaining their plight. The teens plan to go back to the homes this coming Saturday to pick up bags of food.

Borderline Leos, whose members range in age from 12-18, is a branch of the Winthrop Harbor Lions Club. It started in early 2011, according to president Brianna White of Winthrop Harbor. White is a high school senior at Christian Life School in Kenosha and many of the other Leos attend school there, while some are students at Zion-Benton High School.

“It’s so nice to help people get these blessings, especially this time of year,” said White.

Lauren Drysdale of Beach Park, second vice president of the Leos, and a student at Christian Life School said she joined the club because of the community service involved.

“We thought this would be an effective project to give back to our community,” said Drysdale. “Last year, we had pretty good results for the first time.” The Leos at that time amassed some 150 bags full of food for the food pantry.

Dawn Jensen, coordinator of the church food pantry is happy to see the teens get involved. “I’m very excited about them helping us. It’s just amazing to see the younger people step up and do this.”

Jensen said she believes there is indeed hunger in America. “It’s gotten so carried away, it’s almost insane,” said Jensen who lives in Winthrop Harbor. Each month, about 300 families and individuals from five Zion, Beach Park, Winthrop Harbor, Kenosha and Pleasant Prairie draw from the North Point church food pantry. Among the worst are those on fixed incomes, including senior citizens and veterans.

“Nothing is getting any better. When they talk about things improving, I just don’t see it,” said Jensen. “I’m now seeing some of my own neighbors coming to the food pantry. We never saw too many from Winthrop Harbor before. It’s really weird, it’s really sad. It’s getting pretty rough.”

Jensen said she considers two factors in the need for more food — income loss, and foreclosures. “A lot of people in my neighborhood have lost their jobs, their homes, and many of them have moved away,” she said.

The coordinator is preparing for a busy season as she plans give each person or family “a banana box or two full of food.” Not only are the basic non-perishables staples of the pantry, but also “things that kids like including macaroni and cheese, raisins, cookies, canned fruit and applesauce,” said Jensen.

Always in short supply are crucial hygiene items such as soap, shampoo, toothpaste and toilet paper, added Jensen. Baby diapers are also given out at times.

If people can’t give food, an even better alternative might be a check, however small or big. “Even as little as $1 can help,” said Jensen. “If we buy food from the Northern Illinois Food Bank, every dollar can feed a family of four, six meals. If you donate $5, you are giving 30 meals. It all adds up.”

To donate, make a check out to Northern Illinois Food Bank, and mail it to North Point Christian Church, attention Dawn Jensen/food pantry, 900 North Lewis Avenue, Winthrop Harbor, IL 60096.

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Updated: February 1, 2013 1:54AM



Members of the Borderline Leos Club are working toward stocking the food pantry at North Point Christian Church in Winthrop Harbor.

On Saturday, the community youth organization made up of teens went door to door to deposit bags to be filled, and handed out letters explaining their plight. The teens plan to go back to the homes this coming Saturday to pick up bags of food.

Borderline Leos, whose members range in age from 12-18, is a branch of the Winthrop Harbor Lions Club. It started in early 2011, according to president Brianna White of Winthrop Harbor. White is a high school senior at Christian Life School in Kenosha and many of the other Leos attend school there, while some are students at Zion-Benton High School.

“It’s so nice to help people get these blessings, especially this time of year,” said White.

Lauren Drysdale of Beach Park, second vice president of the Leos, and a student at Christian Life School said she joined the club because of the community service involved.

“We thought this would be an effective project to give back to our community,” said Drysdale. “Last year, we had pretty good results for the first time.” The Leos at that time amassed some 150 bags full of food for the food pantry.

Dawn Jensen, coordinator of the church food pantry is happy to see the teens get involved. “I’m very excited about them helping us. It’s just amazing to see the younger people step up and do this.”

Jensen said she believes there is indeed hunger in America. “It’s gotten so carried away, it’s almost insane,” said Jensen who lives in Winthrop Harbor. Each month, about 300 families and individuals from five Zion, Beach Park, Winthrop Harbor, Kenosha and Pleasant Prairie draw from the North Point church food pantry. Among the worst are those on fixed incomes, including senior citizens and veterans.

“Nothing is getting any better. When they talk about things improving, I just don’t see it,” said Jensen. “I’m now seeing some of my own neighbors coming to the food pantry. We never saw too many from Winthrop Harbor before. It’s really weird, it’s really sad. It’s getting pretty rough.”

Jensen said she considers two factors in the need for more food — income loss, and foreclosures. “A lot of people in my neighborhood have lost their jobs, their homes, and many of them have moved away,” she said.

The coordinator is preparing for a busy season as she plans give each person or family “a banana box or two full of food.” Not only are the basic non-perishables staples of the pantry, but also “things that kids like including macaroni and cheese, raisins, cookies, canned fruit and applesauce,” said Jensen.

Always in short supply are crucial hygiene items such as soap, shampoo, toothpaste and toilet paper, added Jensen. Baby diapers are also given out at times.

If people can’t give food, an even better alternative might be a check, however small or big. “Even as little as $1 can help,” said Jensen. “If we buy food from the Northern Illinois Food Bank, every dollar can feed a family of four, six meals. If you donate $5, you are giving 30 meals. It all adds up.”

To donate, make a check out to Northern Illinois Food Bank, and mail it to North Point Christian Church, attention Dawn Jensen/food pantry, 900 North Lewis Avenue, Winthrop Harbor, IL 60096.



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