by Jihfan Lin
The Carl M. Freeman Companies (CMFC) were built on the tenets of community, philanthropy, and taking pride and personal accountability towards those efforts. In celebration of Carl M. Freeman’s 70th anniversary, the CMFC Rockville team chose to volunteer their time with long-time friend, Manna – a Montgomery County non-profit that aims to create hunger awareness that affects so many of its residents.
“A single mother with one child in high school and another in elementary school would need to earn $27.24 an hour, while the local minimum wage is $8.40,”- Manna.
Since opening its doors in 1983, the organization has relied on their strong network of donors, volunteers, and participants to successfully serve over 40,000 individuals each year. “Approximately 79,000 to 81,000 of Montgomery County residents do not know where their next meal will come from,” yet, regardless of these startling figures, so many Montgomery Country residents do not realize this is serious problem in their own backyard.
On a sunny Friday morning, the Rockville team, dressed in their newly minted Freeman gear, was eager to get to work. Once inside, they were tasked to organize, sort, and clear out enormous bins of donated goods.
Within moments, the team settled into a groove. Some happily singing alone to Top 40’s hits, others separating glass from plastic jars, and everyone weighing in on whether or not Gefilte fish was an appropriate meal option, the Freeman bunch had found their stride.
Manna receives donations ranging from fresh produce to baby food to household items. While, they accept everything, they have an efficient approach to distributing food goods only. All non-food or home items are sent to other non-profits, this way allowing each organization to better focus on their areas of expertise.
“It was heart-warming experience volunteering for Manna last Friday,” said Mariam Dianè, “I am looking forward to being a part of this great organization again.” Whether it is the 70th anniversary or a sunny Friday, the Rockville Freemanites wholeheartedly believe that charity begins at home.