Ronald Forbes, a Livermore resident and U.S. Army veteran, is working to give back to his community in a new way -- by coordinating and delivering nutritious food to families in need throughout Alameda County through his nonprofit One Nation Dream Makers.
For his efforts to address food insecurity, as well as to highlight his inspirational story of overcoming addiction and homelessness, the Alameda County Board of Supervisors awarded Forbes with a special commendation last week.
"My biggest motivation in doing what I do every day is that I once was homeless, which pushes me to help families in need with food insecurities," Forbes said in a statement. "I served my country, and now it is my time to serve my community."
Handing the commendation to Forbes was one of the first special presentations as county supervisor for David Haubert, who lauded the Livermore resident for his "dedication, commitment to providing food, faith and respect to our community."
"I am very pleased to have been able to honor Mr. Ronald Forbes for all of his efforts of collecting food and delivering it to those in need, not just in my district but all over Alameda County," said Supervisor Haubert, who joined the board in January to represent District 1, which includes Livermore and Dublin.
Following decorated service in the Army, Forbes struggled in his return to civilian life with post-traumatic stress disorder, drug addiction, homelessness and incarceration, according to Haubert's office. Overcoming those challenges, Forbes is on track to mark six years of sobriety this year.
Forbes, who is now senior vice commander for the Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 7265 in Livermore, is a graduate of the Alameda County Sheriff's Office "Operation My Home Town" program and participated in "Operation Dignity," a national veteran homelessness program. He was also recognized for outstanding character by the National Reentry Resource Center.
Through his nonprofit One Nation Dream Makers, for which he serves as executive director, Forbes works to collect, organize, store and deliver food to families in need in the East Bay. He aims to distribute thousands of boxes of fruit, vegetables, meats and dairy products to families over the next six weeks, according to Haubert's office.
"My mission is to give food to all the families in need, but I have to have a team to do it; Supervisor David Haubert got a hold of me, and we came together to do things in Alameda County and abroad to deliver food to families in need," Forbes said.
To learn more, or to donate, visit the "One Nation Dream Makers Inc." Facebook page or email Forbes at [email protected]