BEND, Ore. - Help stamp out hunger! It's easy. Simply place a bag of nonperishable food donations by your mailbox on the morning of Saturday, May 11, for the National Association of Letter Carriers (NALC) Food Drive.
This is the one day of the year that all Americans have the opportunity – with the help of letter carriers – to easily donate food to help needy families in their community. The "Stamp Out Hunger" effort is the largest single-day food drive in the world. The NALC food drive has collected more than one-billion pounds of food nationally since the food drive's inception in 1993.
The letter carriers food drive benefits the entire Oregon Food Bank Network, serving people who are hungry in every county in Oregon plus Clark County, Wash., including NeighborImpact's Food Bank. Last year's food drive brought in 1.3 million pounds of food throughout the state with 54,000 pounds collected locally in Deschutes, Jefferson and Crook Counties.
"The Letter Carrier's Food Drive is one of the biggest food drives of the year, and helps keep our shelves stocked through the summer and early fall" –Sandy Klein, Food Resource Specialist, NeighborImpact. "The number of people accessing emergency food in Central Oregon each month has been holding steady at 20,000 and we don't see a decrease in those numbers during the summer months. What the postal workers, the community and volunteers do in one day is amazing."
"The Stamp Out Hunger Food Drive occurs during an important time when most school lunch programs are suspended for the summer months, leaving millions of children to find alternative sources of nutrition" writes Fredric Rolando, President of NALC in a letter to all postal workers.
How to help:
- Look for a yellow, plastic, degradable food drive bag in your mail during the first week of May.
- Fill the bag (or any sturdy bag) with nutritious, nonperishable food. NeighborImpact will recycle your bag.
- Place it by your mailbox early on Saturday, May 11.
All donated food stays in the community where it was collected.
Most-wanted nonperishable foods include
Look for foods high in nutrition and low in sugar and fat, such as:
- peanut butter (highly desirable)
- canned meats (tuna, chicken, salmon),
- canned and boxed meals (soup, chili, stew, macaroni and cheese),
- canned or dried beans and peas (black, pinto, lentils),
- pasta, rice cereal,
- canned fruits, 100 percent fruit juice (canned, plastic or boxed),
- canned vegetables,
- cooking oil, boxed baking mixes.
- Rusty or unlabeled cans, glass containers, perishable items, homemade items, noncommercial canned or packaged items, alcoholic beverages, mixes or soda, open or used items.
If you miss your letter carrier's daily visit, drop off your food donations at any post office by Wednesday, May 15.