The November 18th Living Memorial Food Fund

by Tim Carter

On the twenty-fifth anniversary of the Jonestown tragedy, many former Peoples Temple members reunited for the first time since the deaths. That reunion served as the inspiration for the creation of “The November 18th Living Memorial Food Fund: In memory and tribute to those who died in Jonestown and Port Kaituma, Guyana on November 18th, 1978” with the San Francisco Food Bank.

The intention of this endeavor is threefold: 1) to honor the humanitarian intentions and ideals of the people who perished in Jonestown and Port Kaituma; 2) to provide a tangible and concrete avenue for those who lost friends, family, and loved ones, as well as those who are simply empathetic, to pay their respect; and 3) to help feed the hungry. It is a true “living” memorial that will benefit those in immediate need.

This fund provides the ongoing opportunity to create positive action in the now. Perhaps, over time, it will help in some small measure to counter-balance the image of Jonestown as simply representing senseless waste and death.

The November 18th Living Memorial Food Fund graphic

For every dollar contributed to the November 18th Living Memorial Food Fund, the San Francisco Food Bank will be able to purchase approximately $9.00 worth of food. As of this writing, the fund has raised over $300 in just its first few months. The hope, of course, is that it will serve to raise thousands of dollars in the coming years.

There is a Buddhist tenet that translates as “turning poison into medicine.” The November 18th Living Memorial Food Fund is an honest attempt to turn some of the “poison” of the Jonestown tragedy into contemporary “medicine” that honors all who perished in Guyana in a tangible, humanitarian way.

Checks can be mailed directly to:

San Francisco Food Bank
900 Pennsylvania Avenue
San Francisco, CA 94107

Please make the notation of “November 18th Living Memorial Food Fund” or “Jonestown” in the memo area of your donation.

All donations are tax deductible, and the San Francisco Food Bank keeps all donor information strictly confidential.

Originally posted on July 25th, 2013.

Last modified on January 21st, 2015.
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