Thanks for all the good advice! I hadn't even thought about Amazon for bulk orders, I will definitely have to look into that (love their free shipping offers!). And great advice to go for items clearly labelled Gluten Free on the front of the package. That's a good thing to try to stick with especially in the beginning perhaps, as I don't think anyone there is particularly an expert on the subject, though their hearts are certainly in the right place and bless 'em for doing this. Awesome list for kids' food, thank you so much! I won't be able to get everything all at once, but we try to donate monthly, so I'll send some variety and then ask how it went and what was popular.
Yes, I agree food cupboards vary widely in what they can or will do. This one is wonderful in that instead of handing out pre-packed bags of food, the clients are actually allowed to 'shop' from the choices available with a volunteer guiding them, you can have one of these and two of that kind of thing. I always thought it was a blessing for people with special needs diets to be given choices, and I'm so delighted that they're taking this extra step for the gluten-free crowd.
Wonderful ideas, thank you! Yes, things like crackers with individually wrapped components would be perfect, as they will split the packages between multiple families when they can. I know every package of Ritz or Saltines that someone donates winds up feeding three or four families, so yeah it would be great to give them a gluten-free alternative to those!
I am hoping to get your recommendations on this. There is a local food cupboard that my family has donated food to, and volunteered at, that we like to support. I just found out that they have dedicated an entire shelf to gluten free products! They said they have actually had a number of people with celiac and other gluten-free needs come in. Needless to say, we'll continue to support the entire cupboard, but definitely want to help them stock up on the new gluten-free shelf! So, here's my question. I'm actually a very sensitive celiac, and avoid most processed / pre-packaged gluten-free foods, so I'm not completely familiar with the gluten-free options and good brands out there right now. What would be your recommendations that I could buy and donate? What do kids on gluten-free diets like (I don't have kids, so I'm clueless!).
We're talking staples here, nothing too frou-frou (or crazy expensive, our budget has a limit), and can't require a fridge or freezer. So maybe cereal? Snacks? Pasta? Mac & cheese? If I buy them something like Rice Chex, they'll probably put it with the regular cereal, and I'd like to get them stuff that would stay specifically on the gluten-free shelf. Are Panda Puffs good? I'm thinking the Tinkyada pastas would be good, and Annie's has a gluten-free mac and cheese, doesn't it? Maybe I just need to go shopping and look But could definitely use advice on things that kids like!
My mother is LDS and has celiac. There is no reason in the world that you can't be accommodated. Yes, you need to go to a higher authority if the bishop will not help. For my mother, someone else would bring a piece of gluten-free bread that would be served first to the celiacs in the ward (there are 3 in her church). That worked for a time, but then she had a minor gluten reaction one Sunday which she thinks may have been from a contaminated hand or serving tray. She now has permission to bring her own little bit of gluten-free bread in a tiny Rubbermaid container with a lid. They keep the lid on, and when they get to her, the lid gets popped off and the bread dropped into her hand. Nobody else touches it. Works great.
Oh, wow yes. I lose my hair when I get into gluten, I now recognize it as one of my early warning signs that something gluten contaminated has crept into my life again. When I was finally diagnosed with celiac by my doctor, I'd been losing my hair for quite a while (among umpteen other problems which also all turned out to be from gluten). My hair started growing back soon after I pulled all the gluten out of my diet and life, and after a couple of totally gluten-free months I had crazy short tufts of hair growing all over my head from where it was finally getting a chance to grow back in! I went to see my doctor in that time, she saw my hair and said "oh, you are SO celiac".