MAY & JUNE 2022


At Daily Bread, we are no strangers to the white heat of technological change. Who can forget the "Slopebuster Table Leveler" from 2021 - still in active service today! And what we can do with  a pallet, a milk crate and a sheet of plywood is legendary.

But technology has a darker side, ironically foreshadowed by our very own tagline. Intrigued? Didn't think so. No matter, we have a baby skunk story for you.

From the pallet of the President


What better way to greet the Summer than to have a little get-together in idyllic surroundings with the finest group of volunteers who ever lived?

Danbury Yacht Club on June 9 was certainly an idyllic location, and if "finest group of volunteers who ever lived" seems a bit of a stretch for the rag-tag group pictured below, there's a lot of subjectivity involved in what is, after all, a rhetorical question. So let's just roll with it, OK?

The threatening weather forecast all week dissipated as if on cue, and a more perfect day could not have been imagined. Hot dogs the size of, well, extremely large hot dogs, were grilled to perfection, along with hamburgers aplenty. An array of delicious potluck sides and desserts were also on hand to clog any remaining arteries. And all this before Gladys "I love you all" Almonte arrived with the biggest container of eggplant lasagne legally allowed through the Suez Canal. Lightweight eaters cried "Uncle". The pros, "Bring it on!"

But the fun really began when the mainbrace was well and truly spliced with Mark "Speakeasy" Silverman's impressive selection of fine homemade wines. A treat for the novice drinker and more adventurous palate alike. We'll leave it at that.

Special thanks to Julie and Peter Johnson, and Debbie and Ken Fantel for hosting this memorable event.

A better one of Pattie : )


Who knew baby skunks were so cute? We found this little fella hiding among the pallets at the start of one distribution early in June. Mom was nowhere in sight, so after consulting with Wildlife in Crisis, we boxed him up and kindly volunteer Jane Alexander ferried him down to Wilton for some expert care. He'll get to socialize with other skunk foundlings and eventually be re-introduced into the wild.

And before you ask, he was either too polite or too young to spray, so no need to worry if Jane offers you a lift somewhere.


Just in time for Summer, the Daily Bread 2022 Commemorative T-Shirts have arrived. Free to anyone who has volunteered this year, and a very reasonable $20 to everyone else. Soft and stylish, they complement any wardrobe, or at least can be used to mop up spills and polish your car. If you haven't picked yours up yet, or would like a spare, you can order by clicking on the picture below. Act fast though, these puppies are flying off the shelves like hot cakes. Or something like that.

Not everyone got the "wear your new shirt memo," but not bad for this crew.

Cancel that subscription to Vogue : )


Do you Textedly? No, it's not some weirdo new thing teenagers are doing these days. But it is how all the cool volunteers are staying informed about the very latest news from the Pantry. Even better, it allows us to "push" vital messages to our guests in their native languages. Already we have sent out useful updates about our monthly visit limits, information about energy assistance programs, and cash incentives at the Danbury Farmer's Market. Next up, news about Summer school meal programs and help to enroll in SNAP, WIC, and other nutrition assistance programs. Props to Past President Debbie Landzberg for leading the charge on this important initiative.

If you haven't signed up for volunteer-related messages yet, just text the word "TEAM" to (844) 664-1114. 


Credit cards are very convenient, but there is the distinctly inconvenient requirement to pay them off at some point. Not so with our guests who carry the new card from Daily Bread. Tasteful and discreet, the scannable card helps speed up the guest registration process, reduces the chance of input errors, and generally makes life easier for guests and the registration team alike.

Membership has its privileges


One of the most frequent questions I get asked as President of the Pantry is "how long has Daily Bread been in operation?" Quite often I get asked this while standing next to our giant sign that says "Serving Greater Danbury Since 1984" 

My delight in being able to answer a question seemingly without notes is, however, tempered by the answer. Thanks to the eponymous novel, 1984 is freighted with unfortunate associations, some of which run head-on into questions about how much data we request from our guests.

Daily Bread is certainly no Big Brother, but we do collect a fair amount of information about our guests. Recently, as a result of changes to the reporting requirements of our Food Bank partner, we have the opportunity to reduce some of the information we have been recording. But should we? Indeed, should we be collecting more? Or at least collecting different information? Of course, all additional information would be provided on a voluntary basis - and definitely not as a condition to receiving food. But it is not obvious to me a move to collecting less and less information is in the best interests of our guests.

If we had more information, for example about participation in programs such as SNAP (food stamps), or visits to other pantries, we may be able to help serve our guests better - or allocate particularly scarce resources such as diapers more equitably. Personally, I'm a bit of a data nerd, and am always inclined to see the benefits of having more rather than less information. With rare exceptions, I extend this philosophy to sharing my own information with the likes of Google and Facebook if I'm getting a benefit from them in return. But I'm also aware not everyone shares this viewpoint, and I sometimes think our tagline is a salutary reminder addressed specifically to me about amassing data "to help serve you better." (In fairness, I think most things are about me, so there is that too.)

Aside from privacy concerns, there is also the need to make our process as "frictionless" as possible. One reason many folks come to the Pantry rather than try to navigate the bureaucracy of government benefits is that getting food from us is pretty simple. We certainly do not want to change that experience.

What do you think? You can let me know by smashing the "My Two Cents" button below - or if you don't trust technology, by bending my ear in person. Even if it's just to let me know you'd rather have more stories about baby animals.



Our "Carts for Seniors" program was a great success. Thanks to funding from the United Way of Western Connecticut, we were able to purchase and distribute 35 heavy-duty shopping carts to some of our most-in-need Seniors. It has been especially gratifying to see them being put to good use by the happy recipients when picking up their food.


As many of you know, our largest funder by far is the PCLB Foundation, established by Dr. Peter Buck and his family. Aside from co-founding the Subway sandwich shop franchise, Dr. Buck was a respected nuclear physicist, a truly inspiring individual, and a great friend to so many worthy organizations in his adopted hometown of Danbury. He passed away late last year, but the Foundation continues to generously support our work. Given the huge number of causes supported by the Foundation, it was a proud moment when Daily Bread was one of only a handful of organizations mentioned by Danbury's Mayor Dean Esposito in a speech given at Dr. Buck's recent Celebration of Life event.


OK, it's not exactly a gym membership, but it's as good as, perhaps better! Unloading three or four tons of food from our twice-weekly Food Bank delivery truck is a great all-around workout, and you can run around the parking lot as much as you like while waiting for it to arrive. The truth is, we are a little short of help, especially for the Wednesday delivery. So if you are free for an hour or so at 9:00 AM on Monday or Wednesday, please let me know. Thank you!

My Two Cents
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