Acacia Magnet School’s food drive celebrates MLK day

With boxes lining the wall, the Girl Scouts of Acacia Magnet School prepared for their upcoming food drive, dedicated to Martin Luther King Jr. On Jan. 15, 50 crates of food ranging from mac & cheese to ramen cups were filled to the brim, ready for their donation to Adelante. Adelante’s mission is to bring Conejo Valley Latino voices into conversions regarding education, city services and recreation. Their food rescue efforts have created new opportunities for Latinos to contribute to community life.

Having started the food drive in the depths of COVID-19, it has since flourished into a yearly tradition. Mandy Pollak, vice president of Acacia, discusses the importance of teaching youth about helping those around them. “Just in honor of Martin Luther King Jr. and the legacy that he left. We wanted to model that for our students and this was a great opportunity to do that. We’re trying to instill within our students the importance of giving back to the community,” Pollak said.

While a food drive may sound simple to organize, Allison Charnow, Acacia’s PTA president, explained the workforce behind the scene. “We had other students from our school that came and both them and the Girl Scouts organized the different foods, they did signs, helped clean up and they handed out thank you notes to everyone who made donations,” Charnow said.
Denis Carter, principal of Acacia, emphasizes the importance of supporting families in need. “Some families find themselves in a tough situation and need additional support. These food drives provide families the opportunity to receive that support without stripping away a family’s dignity,” Carter said.

While spending a three-day weekend relaxing may sound nice, Acacia has recognized the importance of honoring what MLK stood for. “Everyone uses the three day weekend to go away for the weekend. Instead, this was a great opportunity for our school to get our families to do something to give back to the community and just honor Martin Luther King Jr. and what he gave to the world,” Pollak said.