Sweet Potatoes Distributed in Chicago by Zoroastrian Center

Loading Potatoes

SoSA crop drops are held in parking lots of schools, convention centers, municipalities, and a variety of faith groups. Volunteers come from colleges, civic organizations, scouts, and congregations. Last September, a truckload of potatoes arrived in the parking lot of the Zoroastrian Center of Chicago in nearby Burr Ridge, Illinois. This faith group took on its first crop drop experience in a very big way – and they’re eager to do it again. The truck that arrived in their lot carried 840 fifty-pound bags of potatoes — 42,000 pounds in all.

Photos by Roshan Rivetna

About 40 members of the congregation arrived early and were greeted by a hearty buffet breakfast already prepared by other members to get them ready for the morning’s hard work.

Typical of a SoSA drop, the potatoes were all on their way to feeding agencies all over the region by noon. Volunteer Rohinton Rivetna said, “Everything went well … the very young and the very old all helping out, some doing heavy lifting, some organizing, some feeding and quenching thirst – as it was hot, and some just cheering on. Everyone felt very good, and the recipients were ever so grateful for us doing this.”

Rivetna also said that it was nice to meet all the good folks from the food pantries who picked up the potatoes in their vans and trucks. The recipients included Illinois Food Bank, Loaves and Fishes, West Suburban Community Pantry, Glen Ellyn Food Pantry, Peoples Resource, Elmhurst Yorkfield Food Pantry, Interfaith Food Pantry, and Food Pantry of Darien. These new SoSA volunteers discovered that a single congregation can make great strides in feeding hungry people in one morning – while having a great time doing lots of hard work. Zoroastrians believe in “good thoughts, good words, and good deeds” — and a SoSA potato drop is a great way for anyone to participate in all three.

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