Years ago, I recall reading a Peanuts cartoon when Lucy asked her grandmother why there was a Mother’s Day and a Father’s Day but not a Children’s Day.
“Every day is Children’s Day,” came the quick reply.
Lucy didn’t get the explanation at the time – and neither did I, because I was a kid, not a hard-working parent.
However it came to mind as I considered what I wanted to write about Truck Driver Appreciation Week.
Like many organizations, ALAN is delighted to celebrate it – and to see these hard-working professionals get the credit they deserve. However like Lucy’s grandmother, we also feel like every week is Truck Driver Appreciation Week for us, at least in terms of the enormous gratitude we feel.
You see, after disasters hit, humanitarian organizations urgently need help getting food, shelter, water and medical supplies delivered to disaster sites. Just as important, they need to get those goods delivered without breaking the bank, because (news flash) non-profits never have as much funding as they need.
This explains why the vast majority of requests for logistics assistance that ALAN receives are usually for some form of donated trucking.
It also explains why truckers and trucking companies have figured so prominently in the list of ALAN success stories we’ve collected over the years, including:
- Transporting 24 pallets of hygiene kits to hurricane shelters in Florida
- Delivering 100,000 pounds’ worth of bread, rice, frozen meals and more to Hurricane Ian survivors
- Getting five pallets of OTC medications to flood survivors in Kentucky
- Driving 18 pallets of PPE and medical supplies from California to Florida, so they could later be flown to Haiti to help with earthquake relief
- Transporting a truckload of pet food and supplies to a shelter in Ripley, Virginia
- Moving 10 pallets of plywood from Florida to Delaware to assist with flood recovery
- Providing two refrigerated vehicles for two months to help food banks in Arkansas deliver food across that state during the pandemic
All of these moves – and the many more I could list – were performed free of charge by generous trucking companies/3PLs. And all of them were made possible, in part, by the amazing people who show up to hit the road day after day – and who sometimes have to navigate in dicey weather and drive through disaster zones to do it.
So as the official Truck Driver Appreciation Week begins, look for ALAN to be among the many organizations who are standing up to cheer. But as it ends, don’t be surprised if we decide to keep the celebration going. Because when it comes to thanking truckers and trucking companies for how much they’ve helped us help disaster survivors, one week isn’t nearly long enough.
American Logistics Aid Network