Middle Tennessee

Do Good Country Spotlight: Help Feed Middle Tennessee

June 23, 2010 at 10:46 am , by

Earlier this month, I wrote about my pending trip to Nashville to soak up the CMA Fest and to volunteer with hot country duo Coldwater Jane at the Second Harvest Food Bank of Middle Tennessee. Despite the stifling temperatures outside, Coldwater’s Brandon Jane, Leah Crutchfield and I all had a blast sorting through and boxing up close to 12,000 pounds of food with the rest of our top-notch volunteer group. The three of us left incredibly inspired by the Second Harvest team and amazed at the never-ending great work they do. (Special shout-outs to our group leaders Ben and Toni!) Check out this video to get more details on what we humbly did that afternoon and how rewarding an experience it was. You also get to hear Coldwater Jane’s addictive track “Bring On the Love” and see ’em in action.

And just in case you haven’t donated yet to our online food drive for Second Harvest, please consider doing so. (It’s up and running through July 30.) Though the floods were in early May, the area will be in recovery mode for quite some time. Middle Tennessee’s Davidson county is battling $2 billion in damages alone. Across the state, more than 11,000 homes and business have suffered extensive damages and many families have been displaced.

Second Harvest itself was partially flooded and had no electricity for several days, which resulted in the loss of $200,000 worth of perishable food. Their Kids Café and BackPack Program, which provides low-income kids with nutritious meals and snacks, were both temporarily interrupted. According to Second Harvest, the number of people seeking emergency food has increased by 50 percent after the floods and those numbers sadly don’t seem to be waning.

Here’s the good news, though: Just $6.25 helps to serve 24 meals, so it’s easy to help make a big difference. Please do, if you can, by clicking here and donating.

My thanks to Coldwater Jane for their hard work (and laughs), and to everyone at Second Harvest for all of their help in setting up our volunteer session and food drive, especially Meghan, Heidi, Heather, Ben and Toni. Keep up the great work!


Do Good Country Spotlight: LHJ/Second Harvest Virtual Food Drive

June 1, 2010 at 12:48 pm , by

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In Middle Tennessee, folks are still suffering through the aftereffects of widespread flooding that occurred after May’s record-breaking rainfall devastated the area. In addition to close to two dozen deaths, there’s been an estimated $1.5 billion in damages and the recovery process is going to be a long one—expected to be one of the costliest in U.S. history. Many people didn’t have flood insurance and have lost most of everything they had.

Through it all, the Second Harvest Food Bank of Middle Tennessee has shifted into high gear despite having its operations compromised for a few days itself. They’ve already distributed more than 500,000 pounds of food in the wake of the floods and, as they so eloquently put it, they “remain focused on doing what we do best: getting food, water and basic necessities to hungry people.” Of the 46 counties the Bank serves, 31 had been declared federal disaster areas so you can imagine their intensified need for food donations, monetary contributions and volunteers.

CWJ_H4-3_GP_300cmykWell, they’ve got my support. I’m heading down to Nashville next week for the CMA Music Festival and I was happy to schedule some time to volunteer. I’ve even invited sisters Brandon Jane and Leah Crutchfield—country music’s Coldwater Jane (left)—to roll up their sleeves and join me for an afternoon in the Second Harvest warehouse. (Good news: They’re in!) What we need to do now, though, is make sure there’s an ample amount of food to sort through and box up. That’s where you come in.

No matter where you live, we’ve made it easy for you to help us help Second Harvest. All you have to do is click here to donate to Ladies’ Home Journal’s virtual Middle Tennessee Food Drive. Any amount you can spare to give will be greatly appreciated. Got $6.25? With that small amount, you can help serve 24 meals!

Thanks in advance for your generosity. And if you live in Nashville or happen to be visiting anytime soon, check out the amazing Hands On Nashville website, which makes it easy to find other worthwhile volunteer projects that are helping to rebuild the area.

For a little inspiration in the meantime, crank up your computer volume and rock out to Coldwater Jane’s “Bring On the Love” video, after the jump. Read more