Stamp Out Hunger Food Drive Set

Thursday, May 10, 2018
Volunteers with donated items at the Rector Post Office during the 2017 drive.
courtesy photo

Once again this year local postal workers in Rector and Piggott will join others from across the region, and the nation, as they take part in their 26th annual Stamp Out Hunger Food Drive. The event will be held this Saturday, May 12. The food drive, which has become America's largest single day of giving, is conducted by the National Association of Letter Carriers in conjunction with the U.S. Postal Service, National Rural Letter Carriers’ Association, Valpak, United Way, AFL-CIO, the AARP Foundation, United Food and Commercial Workers International Union and other partners.

The drive offers postal patrons an opportunity to donate non-perishable food items, with letter carriers picking up the donations throughout the day. In preparation, special donation bags have been distributed, which may be filled with items and left out for pick up on Saturday.

Experts estimate nearly 50 million Americans, including one in five children, are not sure where their next meal is coming from. They also note that studies have shown that lack of adequate nutrition also affects cognitive and behavioral development in children.

To help address these issues the Stamp Out Hunger Food Drive was developed, and in the years since many have benefited from the generosity of others. In years past millions of pounds of food has been collected nationally, and millions have been fed as a result. Over the course of the program's history well over a billion pounds of food has been collected.

Organizers also note the timing of the annual drive is crucial, as food banks and pantries often receive the majority of their donations during the holiday seasons of Thanksgiving and Christmas. As a result, many pantries are depleted by spring, the same time many school breakfast and lunch programs are not available to children in need.

Experts also encourage the donation of healthy items, such as low-sodium foods and low-sugar items such as beans, canned tuna in water, peanut butter, soups, vegetables, pasta and sauce, cereal, oatmeal and other grains. Canned meats, canned fruit and canola or olive oil are also good choices.

Those wanting to participate are asked to leave their non-perishable food donations in a bag by their mailbox this Saturday, May 13, and the postal carriers will do the rest. The collections will be going on in most communities, and everyone is encouraged to participate.

Those wanting additional information on the effort may visit www.nalc.org

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