“Operation Cratchit” Christmas Food Drive
Recap & Frequently Asked Questions


How did we do in 2022?

Thank you to everyone that supported our yearly food drive that benefits the Stanford Settlement Neighborhood Center. As a community, we donated over 32,000 pounds of food and over $18,000. These donations indicate a 36% increase from last year, and our 50% student participation also increased from last year. These donations will help the Stanford Settlement provide annual Christmas baskets to neighbors needing extra help during the Christmas holidays.

Thank you to everyone who helped collect food in the mornings or helped unload the food at the Stanford Settlement. Thank you to all of the faculty, staff, and administrators at Jesuit High School that helped to make the Food Drive a success. Thank you to Elite Power for the donation and transportation of the trailer that we use to collect the food. Most importantly, thank you to our families for your incredible generosity.

What is “Operation Cratchit”?

An annual canned food drive to benefit Stanford Settlement that began over 50 years ago.

All help is appreciated to reach the goal of feeding 600+ households from the North Sacramento and Gardenland neighborhoods who have registered with the Stanford Settlement’s Operation Cratchit.

What is needed?

  • Canned food (fruits, vegetables, soups, etc) Many grocery stores sell these in packs of 8-12, prepackaged in cardboard or shrink-wrap—very effective. 
  • We officially discourage glass containers
  • No home-canned items (Jams, jellies, pickles, relish, etc.)
  • No bags of oranges, apples, or fresh fruit
  • Currently, please discourage 25#, 50#, 100# bags of rice and beans. We have plenty.  (While still acceptable—the goal is to deliver a trailer containing a full menu of food, not just rice). 
  • Cash donations are accepted and encouraged.
  • Checks made out to Jesuit HS are always welcome.  These funds go to round out the larder and purchase turkeys, hams, and roasts.

What stories can be told?

Ask an alum, they have plenty, the following are only a sample.  

  • In the early 80’s, students brought in so much food that the trailer was full. McLaughlin Drayage, a J-High family who donated the unit, brought out a second trailer to handle the excess that was piled on the loading dock.
  • In the mid-90’s a much bigger trailer was so full the front skids sank through the asphalt—a special tow truck was dispatched to extract the trailer.  This happened again in 2017.
  • On numerous occasions, students have organized very effective collection efforts in their neighborhoods. They developed a simple leaflet explaining the Food Drive, set a pickup date, attached it to a brown paper bag and left it on the porch of houses. On the appointed evening the students returned and collected the filled bags which many folks generously filled and left for them. 
  • Ask Dave Zielke how he punned one of his classes for an entire period and collected several hundred dollars in the process.