REMSA Shopping Spree Benefits Area Food Bank - KTVN Channel 2 - Reno Tahoe News Weather, Video -

REMSA Shopping Spree Benefits Area Food Bank

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Every month the Food Bank of Northern Nevada feeds 97,000 people, which totals 12.8 million meals every year. Our annual Share Your Christmas food drive helps replenish the food bank's supply. Last year, northern Nevada communities donated more than 177,000 pounds of food and more than $141,000 during our one-day event.

Our 20th annual Share Your Christmas event runs from 5 a.m. to 6 p.m. Friday, December 14th. We already got a glimpse of one of the large donations that will be dropped off at the Grand Sierra Resort. REMSA paramedics and EMT's participated in their annual food shopping spree at the pink Scolari's in south Reno.

One of the first responders new to the event is Nicole Cox. Racing to accidents is nothing new for the EMT, but racing down aisles is. "It was a blast. It's a workout though - pushing the carts around." Nicole and a handful of other employees piled high shopping cart-after-cart with food for our Share Your Christmas event and it will all go to the Food Bank of Northern Nevada.

While rookie shoppers, like Nicole, started out a little slow and gently pulled one item off the shelves at a time, they quickly learned their approach needed to be a little more aggressive. The goal was to cram as many non-perishable food items as possible in a short amount of time. The shoppers also had to be smart about the food choices. Meals and foods packed with protein are in high demand. Nicole picked protein-packed peanut butter, "We gotta get chunky and creamy!" She also dashed for the soup and did not forget about the kids. Baby food and formula, in particular, are considered gold.

The employees do not just give back during this event. REMSA employees have the option to deduct money from their paychecks to help the needy all year long. The shoppers chosen to participate in the shopping spree were chosen because of good deeds they performed while responding to calls. Nicole has gone above and beyond more than once. She says her most memorable call was when, "one of the family members was deaf and I happen to know sign language, so I got to use my skill and communicate with them, which was very rewarding and helpful." Plus, she gave the patient $20 for prescriptions.

Good deeds like that is music to our ears. Perhaps an even better sound, however, is all the beeping we heard at the checkout stands after REMSA wrapped up shopping. REMSA purchased more than $4,000 worth of groceries for local families in need.

Written by Kristen Remington

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