Lane organizes food distribution

Friday, August 21, 2020

Alta City Council Member Tom Lane once again came through with his home-grown vegetables for the community, and then some, including fresh eggs and chicken. He organized a free food distribution for selected Alta residents on Aug. 15th, with the help of the mayor, some council members and others from the community.

Lane contacted specific Alta residents beforehand to let them know they would receive fresh food. “I’ve got a list in my truck,” he said of his game plan.

Volunteers got together the evening before to bag vegetables at the pool where permission was given to store them overnight in refrigerators. The following morning, Lane drove to where he needed to pick up chicken and 40-50 dozen eggs, all donated from residents in the area. Three vehicles of volunteers delivered the food.

Lane has a way of getting others to pitch in, this time city council members. At the Aug. 3rd city council meeting, Lane mentioned his project where he solicited assistance from the Alta mayor and council members. Others from the community helped out as well.

City councilman Les Mann lended a hand, the reason being he sees the need on a variety of levels. “Lots of the people we go to are elderly people and men and women who live alone,” he said. Not only are they receiving nutritious food, but a variety of studies show that seniors who receive meal deliveries at home report significantly less loneliness than those who do not.

Mann knows Lane has a history in Alta of organizing community projects. “He always wants to do a good thing, and he’s thoughtful for other people. He’s always busy with his projects,” Mann said.

Some reasons Lane distributes food is to share his garden vegetables, engage in face-to-face conversations with people he visits while delivering, and provide good nutrition to people through healthy, organic food. In his garden, he diligently grows tomatoes, cucumbers, peppers, green beans and zucchini, much of which went into the food bags. Why do it? “I’ve always helped out people,” he simply said.

Another group that helped out from afar was the Teamsters Community Action Network, headquartered in Cedar Rapids with local chapters scattered around. Lane is a board member, and the group stepped up for him as they always do. “They give me money whenever I need it,” he said. They paid for pizza and pop for volunteers and supplies such as bags in which to put the food.