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  • Volunteer of the Month

    Beverly Beams - September 2014. “I research and list books for sale on Grey Bears page and ship orders. Books are endlessly fascinating.”

    Born: June 11, 1948 in Herford, TX. “My family moved to Medford OR when I was 3 years old.” Age 66. Lives in: Soquel
    Favorite color: blue

    Why Santa Cruz: “When my dad passed away in 1973, I moved my mom with me to Santa Cruz to be closer to my sister.”

    Bev_Beams1Career: “I worked with mental health clients at Community Connection, and then with Lifespan as the senior office clerk for 16 years.”

    Why Grey Bears: “After I retired I looked for volunteer opportunities and resonated with Grey Bears. I found my niche in the online book program, which I just love. I research and list books for sale on amazon and ship orders. Books are endlessly fascinating.”

    On volunteering: “I’ve upgraded my computer skills exponentially. I continue to meet interesting people and feel fulfilled that my work supports weekly food deliveries to seniors. I’ve noticed that the quality and quantity of the food in the bags has improved a lot in just the past two years.”

    Hobbies: “Beach walks, reading, sewing and listening to music. I’ve always enjoyed Elvis since I was a kid – the younger pre-bloated, Vegas jumpsuit-stage Elvis. I’ll visit Graceland someday.”

    Best part of aging: “I feel free to speak my mind, to express what I believe without worrying what anyone else thinks.”

    Best advice: “If you’ve recently retired and are looking for a place to contribute, Grey Bears is amazing.”

    Best bookstore find: “Two civil war books that inspired me to research my great-great grandfather who fought for the Union Army. It’s always special to find old books on cooking and sewing, and children’s books from the 1930s and 40s. We received a mint copy of Herb Caen’s autobiography signed by the author. That one went really well.”

  • Recycling Event at Westside New Leaf

    new_leafSaturday, August 23 from 11am-3pm. New Leaf Community Market and Grey Bears team up for a neighborhood recycling drop off a their westside Santa Cruz store, 1101 Fair Ave, Santa Cruz CA 95060 (click here for a map).

    Neighbors are invited to drop off all working or non-working electronics, computers, printers, monitors, TVs, cables, phones, audio/video gear, appliances (big or small, anything with an electric cord), scrap metal, aluminum, water heaters, etc. We’ll also gladly accept household items for our thrift store – clothing, small furniture, kitchen items, clothing and accessories, books, CDs, DVDs, garden items, textiles, and medical equipment, bikes and more.

    All proceeds benefit the Grey Bears Brown Bag Program, delivering shopping bags of healthy produce and staples to 4,500 Santa Cruz County seniors each week. Grey Bears partners with E-Steward certified processor ECS Refining.

  • Micah Posner, Brown Bag Assembler

    micah3Santa Cruz City Councilmember, Micah Posner, is a big supporter of Grey Bears. An avid cyclist and former director of People Power, Micah showed his commitment to helping distribute healthy produce to seniors by working the Grey Bears brown bag line this morning. “I’m keeping up,” he said. “Just ask my two partners on both sides.” A HUGE bear hug to Micah and the entire Santa Cruz City Council for their longstanding support!

  • A volunteer’s thoughts on Grey Bears

    rainbowI love Grey Bears!! As a volunteer with this organization and as one of its newer members, I not only see the benefit to others in my community but to my family as well. Grey Bears is a unique and local organization that takes the stuff that most cities throw away and resurrects it into: meals, products, funds, compost, and most importantly, meaningful and fulfilling roles that sustain our citizens, our community and our earth.

    As a resident of Scotts Valley, I have come to rely on the Brown Bag grocery program to supplement my weekly groceries. Personally, I drop off bags for over 40 other families in Scotts Valley. And I have witnessed and participated in Grey Bear’s brilliant food program where they offer a conduit for the “day old” products and produce to fill stomachs instead of dumpsters. In addition to working with grocery retailers, the gleaning program with local farms also provides an avenue for produce that may not be cosmetically “market worthy” to find very grateful consumers.

    Before “Green” was a thing, Grey Bears set up systems for reusing and recycling that are models for other communities. They are a great example of a creativite and future-visioned business model.

    I encourage you to directly support Grey Bears as your contribution remains local, vital and easily witnessed — and we have added and continue to add more households to the program. And if you’ve never seen the Grey Bear campus – get yourself over there on a Brown Bag morning and be amazed. And don’t forget the Thrift Store, it’s the best one in Santa Cruz County.

    Ruth Poe

  • Email SCC Public Works in Support of Grey Bears Email SCC Public Works in Support of Grey Bears