What’s New at ASG-Anacortes?

Next Pick-Up: December 14th

Current Food Shortages:  Cereal, granola bars/kids’ snacks, peanut butter and jelly, meals-in-a-can, canned fruit, rice/rice-a-roni. Secondary to those types of items, canned yams and instant potatoes are also needed.

Some of you have asked if we accept monetary donations, and the answer is yes, we gladly do!  Please note that checks should be made payable to A Simple Gesture-Anacortes.  (We are a separate entity from The Salvation Army.)  Monetary donations to ASG-Anacortes are used to purchase special food items such as fresh fruits, dairy items, etc., for our Red Bag Pantries. We also provide larger food donations to families in need during the holidays. 
Checks may be mailed to ASG-Anacortes, P.O. Box 1413, Anacortes, WA 98221.  Or, you may donate online using our Square store at http://squareup.com/store/a-simple-gesture-anacortes .

A Simple Gesture is 4!

The best way to celebrate…10,197 pounds donated on our 4th anniversary!  And a great volunteer turn-out!  Thank you Anacortes for 4 great years of serving our community together.

Next Pick-Up: October 12th

Food shortages include soups, chili, canned fruit, canned vegetables, and jelly. If you’d like to contribute items beyond the needed food, October’s special request is our 4th annual granola bar collection for our friends at Food To Go, our local backpack program that feeds students in need.

Next Pick-Up: August 10th

Food shortages include canned vegetables, spaghetti sauce, canned meat, tuna, and jelly.  If you’d like to contribute items beyond the needed food, here are the special request items: toilet paper and toiletries (toothbrushes, toothpaste, deodorant, shampoo, etc.)

See you Saturday 4/13!

Have your items on your doorstep by 9am tomorrow morning!  If it’s raining, please consider putting your red bag inside of a plastic bag or under a covering.  Food shortages: canned fruit, cereal, mac & cheese, and granola/cereal bars.

Seeking New Board Member

Join Us!  We are now searching for a new non-voting ASG board member. This is a volunteer position requiring up to 10 hrs/month. Proficiency in Microsoft Office required. Our board meets once a month, usually in the early afternoon. Please email us at asimplegestureanacortes@gmail.com if interested. Thank you!

February Pick-Up CANCELED

As disappointing as this is for us all, our ASG Board is compelled to CANCEL this weekend’s red bag pick up due to the weather and road conditions.  This cancellation includes our main pick up tomorrow (Saturday), as well as this Sunday and Monday’s make up days.  Our volunteers will NOT be available at the food bank Saturday to accept dropped off donations, so please stay home and stay safe!
Unfortunately, there will NOT be a make-up pick up day.  However, we strongly urge you to deliver your filled red bag(s) to The Salvation Army food bank after the weather clears and the roads are safe — they will still be in great need of them this month!  
Bags can be taken to The Salvation Army (30th and R Ave) during their regular business hours, Monday – Thursday, 9am-4pm (closed 12-1pm for lunch).  Be sure to pick up an empty red bag there for next time!  If delivering your bag isn’t possible, you can save it for our April pick up.
Current Food Shortages: jelly, spaghetti sauce (no pasta), Rice a Roni, Pasta Roni, Hamburger Helper, Spam, canned meats, granola bars and toilet paper.  Our special requests (if you would like to do something extra!) are adult diapers/Depends and Ensure type drinks.  Thank you for your support!

New Record Set!

Thank you for helping us end the year strong with a new record of 11,590 pounds donated at the December pick-up!  We are so grateful for all of our donors and volunteers.

December Food Requests

Our final pick-up of the year will be on December 8.  Current food shortages are peanut butter, jelly, meals-in-a-can (soup, chili, ravioli, etc), oatmeal, canned meat and canned fruit.

We will NOT be collecting for our normal holiday meats drive this year.  You were so generous last year that we had extra funds to pay for holiday meats again this year.  We purchased 18 turkeys for the Anacortes Family Center (AFC) residents to enjoy for Thanksgiving.  The food bank was 10 turkeys short, so we also purchased those for them.  We plan to use remaining funds to purchase Christmas hams for AFC as well. We love this tradition of helping everyone to have a special holiday meal!

Giving Tuesday

What do we do with your monetary donations?ASG is a volunteer-run organization with minimal overhead (red bags, insurance, licensing fees, etc) which is paid for by various grants. That means all of your monetary donations go directly to food purchases. We purchase:
– fresh foods (milk, yogurt, bagels, cheese sticks, etc) for the students of Cap Sante High School
– fresh fruit and Ensure for our seniors in need at our Senior Activity Center red bag pantry
– food necessities for incoming Anacortes Family Center families (milk, bread, eggs, etc)
– holiday meats for AFC residents and food banks
– and more!

To donate a monetary gift:
– Use the Square store on our website
– Mail a check to: A Simple Gesture, PO Box 1413, Anacortes, WA 98221

Thank you!

Great October Pick-up

Happy 3rd Anniversary! We celebrated by collecting 10,066 lbs! That brings our total since inception to well over 150,000 lbs. Thank you for your continued support year after year. Our friends at Food to Go were very grateful for all the granola bars.

October Food Requests

Currently the food bank has a lot of empty shelves.  They need jelly, peanut butter, canned fruit, canned meats, meals-in-a-can (chili, ravioli, soups etc.), cereal, spaghetti sauce, vegetables.  Please be a generous as you can this month.  Our special request for October is our 3rd annual granola bar drive for our friends at Food to Go Anacortes, the local program that feeds school children in need.  Please remember our special requests are an extra item to add if you are able.  Please focus on the food shortages first.

Pick up Day is October 13.  Please have your bags out on the front porch by 9AM.  Thank you in advance for your contributions to A Simple Gesture Anacortes.  The need is great this month.

A Simple Gesture is 3!

October marks our third anniversary.  From our humble beginnings three years ago we have grown to over 760 donors, and a food collection of just under 150,000 pounds of food.  We have opened Red Bag Pantries in several locations throughout town and organized food drives at businesses in town for the months that we don’t pick up food.  We are proud of our accomplishments but are mostly extremely grateful for our donors and volunteers that help get food to the needy throughout the year.  A huge thank you to all of our donors and volunteers, you are making a difference in other’s lives.  Thank you Anacortes.

Thank You City of Anacortes!

Thank you, City of Anacortes, for adopting the month of September by hosting a food drive for us! You collected 358 lbs of food and 5 lbs of household items, along with $330 of donations. Your generosity will keep our food banks going until our October 13th pick up.

Another Successful Pick-up In April.

Thank you again Anacortes, you are the most generous city around.  Our April pick up brought in 8,435 pounds of food, 215 pounds of household items, 70 pounds of pet food, 22 pound of baby items and 601 pounds of personal items for a grand total of 9,343 pounds.

Another Record Breaking Pick-up In February.

Over 11,000 pounds of food was collected in Feb.  Anacortes you are amazing in your generosity.  Your donations make people’s lives better.  Island View School had a food drive  to celebrate the 100th day of school.  They brought in 1127 cans of food.  Thank you Island View and 1025 pounds.  Great Job.

Our goal for this year was to reach 750 donors.  We surpassed that number this month.


A Simple Gesture Anacortes Receives Award for Exemplary Community Service

In January, 2018  Sue Monaghan and A Simple Gesture received the ‘Others’ Award from The Salvation Army for the work that they have been doing in Anacortes to feed the hungry.   Since the Salvation Army started in Anacortes in 1906, it has handed out this top award only three times, including the one for A Simple Gesture. It is the highest award that the Salvation Army hands out and it is given for exemplary service in the community.  Sue Monaghan and her team were honored to receive this prestigious award.  Sue credited  the success of A Simple Gesture to the 100+ volunteers and 700+ donors who give of their time and donations so generously.

Since A Simple Gesture began collecting food for the community,  The Salvation Army has not needed to spend additional money to buy food to make up for shortages.  The money that was budgeted for buying food is now being used to help those who need additional financial help.

During the presentation, several community leaders indicated that food donations through a Simple Gesture were making a difference in the community. One great example is the food donated to Cap Sante High School.  The donated food has made a profound difference in the lives of the students.  When the students are fed, their grades improve, and  they are able to focus on their work.

This award would not have been possible without the generous donors and volunteers of Anacortes.  We thank you all for your participation and generous contributions to A Simple Gesture.

Happy Second Anniversary


October, 2017  is the second anniversary of A Simple Gesture Anacortes.  We have grown from our original 310 donors to well over 700 donors.  Our first pick up was 4,000 lbs and we have more than doubled that pick up this month with 9882 lbs. of food and goods.  Over the past two years we have collected more than 96,000 lbs. of food for Anacortes.   None of this could have been possible without the generosity of our donors and our volunteers.   Thank you Anacortes!

August Pick up

We collected 8,100 pounds of donations in August! A big thank you to our drivers and warehouse workers who donate a Saturday to help with the pick up.

June Pick up

It was a beautiful day for our June pick-up! We collected 8,998 pounds today.  We love our community.

April Pick up

Another huge success, we collected over 9000 pounds of food and household items.  Personal items topped 600 pounds.  Great job Anacortes.  A big thank you to our drivers and warehouse workers who donate a Saturday to help with the pick up.  It takes all of us working together to make ASG a success.  Thank you.

Shell collected over 800 pounds of food and household items for ASG.  Businesses in Anacortes are collecting food on our off months to aid in feeding the hungry.  Thank you Shell for your contribution to feed the homeless.

The hard work and dedication of our volunteers and partners is helping feed hungry people right here in Anacortes.  Thank you one and all.

 February Pickup Saturday the 10th

Current food shortages include spaghetti sauce, Mac and cheese, canned meat, jelly, and meals-in-a-can. Our February special request is for household items including toilet paper, paper towels, and laundry soap.  Remember the special request is an additional item to your normal food donation.  If you must choose between one or the other please choose the food.  Thank you so much for your donations, they are making a huge difference.

 December Pickup Breaks Records

Thank you Anacortes.  Your incredible generosity continues to amaze the board of A Simple Gesture.  Thank you so much.  This month we collected over 10, 890 pounds of food.  Since we began collecting food two years ago we have finally reached over 100,000 pounds in donations.  We are so pleased and excited to be feeding hungry people here in Anacortes.

A huge thank you to all of our volunteers, both warehouse workers and drivers.  We could not do this without you.  We are looking forward to another successful year in 2018.

Bags waiting to be processed!  We were overwhelmed with the city’s generosity.

October Pickup Huge Success!

Wow Anacortes donors, you are amazing.  We collected 9,882 lbs of food on Saturday.  We went from empty shelves to over flowing shelves.  We also received over 500 lbs. of granola bars.  Thank you so much for your generous donations.  What a way to celebrate our second anniversary.  A huge thank you to our drivers and warehouse volunteers, without your hard work we could not begin to fill the food bank shelves.  Our next pickup is Saturday, December 9, 2017.

Special Request for October Pickup

In addition to your normal donation, consider adding in a few granola bars.  October’s special request is granola bars for the Food to Go Program.

August Pickup is a Record Breaker!

Thank you Anacortes!  You generous donations broke the record.  We picked up 9,535 pounds of donations.  Thank you!  The shelves were empty when we arrived on Saturday and full when we left.


A huge thank you to our volunteers, our drivers and our warehouse workers, we could not do this without your help.  You did an awesome job.

We accept fresh fruits and vegetables from your garden.

Bags waiting to be sorted, weighed and stocked.  

Our next pickup is October 14 and will be our two year anniversary.  We will post more information about special needs in the next few weeks.

Food Shortages & Special Request for the August Pick up

I was just in the food bank this morning and they are running low on food, so our August 12th pickup up is very important.  Current food shortages include top ramen, meals-in-a-can (especially soups), canned meats,   canned fruits,  jelly and spaghetti sauce.  Our special request this time focuses on our elderly population.  We need Ensure and small/medium Depends (adult pull-ups).  Please remember our special request is an optional extra item to add to your bag.

We are excited to announce that we now have 700 Donors.  Thank you for signing up and encouraging your friends and neighbors to participate.

June 10th pickup is a huge success!

Last week the shelves at The Salvation Army looked like this. They were bare.

Anacortes did another amazing job of restocking the empty shelves at The Salvation Army.  We collected 9,000 lbs. of food, which matches our record from last December.  Donors you are amazing and we cannot thank you enough.  Last week the food bank shelves were virtually empty.  The Salvation Army has added another 100 families to their lists since our last pickup.  Donors, you are making a huge difference in the lives of the hungry in Anacortes.  You are amazing.

Our next pickup day will be August 12th.  If you don’t have a red bag yet please contact us on our web page and we will get you signed up.

A bag left on a fence post on Guemes Island. We are so happy to offer pickup for Guemes Islanders.
We had so many bags coming in that they were backing up into the parking lot. It took us an extra hour and a half to process all of the incoming bags. Thank you volunteers.
Our fearless leaders, Kristin Rogers and Sue Monaghan. They spend hours and hours working to make A Simple Gesture run like clockwork.
Cars backed up to unload bags. Thank you drivers.
A Wheel Barrel full of food!

Helping Those in Need: Snack Bags

Have you ever wanted to give some one on the side of the road a hand but not give them cash.  Here is a simple solution, keep a baggie in your car filled with simple snacks, crackers and peanut butter, applesauce, granola bars, ready made tuna snacks etc.  Include some plastic spoons or forks and a napkin.  Then when you see someone in need you have an instant solution.


Did you know that you can make donations to A Simple Gesture Anacortes by shopping on Amazon Smile?  Just go to the Amazon Smile page and login using your Amazon password.  Choose A Simple Gesture – Anacortes as your charity of choice.  Amazon donates a percentage of every purchase to us.  Thank you in advance!

Registration for a Red Bag 

New to A Simple Gesture?  You can register on line for your red bag. Just go to our registration page and fill out the form.  Be sure to submit after you are done.  At this time we ask that you live in Anacortes, on island. Outlying areas will be added at a later date.



“One cannot think well…without adequate food.” Cap Sante  High School teachers shared with us that the rate of completed homework assignments has dramatically increased since the opening of their private Red Bag Pantry.  We are even more pleased to announce that we just expanded their pantry to include milk and yogurt which is funded by local grants and our donors.  Thank you Anacortes! It takes a village.


Feeding Anacortes one red bag at a time