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La Costa families continue community service

LA COSTA — A group of Rancho La Costa Neighborhood Volunteer families have been busy with plans for the next few months of volunteering opportunities.
In February, they began collecting the tab tops off of soda/beer/tea cans for Ronald MacDonald House, which uses them for recycling and fundraising efforts. They will be delivering them in April when the group provides dinner at the Ronald MacDonald House.
“One of our many goals is to offer the Ronald McDonald House families a dinner every week night with brunch on the weekend, “ said volunteer Susan Wingate Wankier. “Not having to prepare their own meal after a day at the hospital gives families one less worry during this difficult time in their lives. Additionally, they have a chance to connect and spend time with other families in similar situations.”
The addition of a new commercial kitchen at the RMH has allowed it to partner with Job Corps of San Diego to create a food service program. The Job Corps students and RMH staff craft and create the meals for weekday lunches and dinners and weekend brunch. Members of the La Costa group will be reheating the food, setting up the dining room, serving and interacting with families, and cleaning up after the dinner service.
“Any dollar donation the group can provide will help offset the cost of the food we have prepared,” according to Susi Marquez, Ronald McDonald House Events Coordinator. “Our cost to feed 100 guests is approximately $200, but any donation is appreciated. Groups may also elect to bring a donation of food staples for our pantries.”
To donate, contact Marquez at (858) 598-2413, or Gerry Gronefeld, Food
Service Associate at (858) 598-2442.
In March, the La Costa group will prepare care packages for Marines. One of the families knows a chaplain in the Marines, being deployed this month to Afghanistan.
“She is responsible for morale boosts as part of her job,” Wankier said. “When I offered to help, she said they need care packages, which include hard candies, gum, toiletries, baby wipes, comic books and especially old DVD movies and popcorn. Donations to help in shipping costs could also be raised by the youngsters.
In April, the group is signed up for April 17 to prepare dinner for the families staying at Ronald MacDonald House. Ten or more families will make dinner for 75 families.
In May, the group is considering a beach or trail cleanup.