Local mail carriers will do more than deliver and pick up mail Saturday. They will help feed the hungry.
Residents are encouraged to leave nonperishable food items at their mail boxes that day in participation of a nationally recognized food drive.
The National Association of Letter Carriers, along with rural letter carriers, other postal employees and numerous other volunteers, recognize the association’s Stamp Out Hunger National Food Drive on the second Saturday in May, local mail carrier Curtis Gay said.
“Letter carriers in more than 10,000 cities and towns across America deliver much more than mail when they walk and drive along their postal routes” on this day, he said. “They also collect the goodness and compassion of their postal customers who participate in … the largest one-day food drive in the nation and probably the world.”
Residents are asked to leave donations — a bag or box filled with nonperishable items — at their mail boxes. The food will be distributed to local food banks, and then given to those in need.
Nonperishable foods include canned fruits and vegetables, canned meats, pasta, evaporated milk, rice and dry beans and other staples.
The annual drive has resulted in delivery of more than 1 billion pounds of donations to community food banks and pantries during the past 20 years.
“Last year, Statesboro’s donations went up from 12,000 pounds to 20,000 pounds. That says a lot about our communities, even in these tough economic times.”
The U.S. Postal Service and Campbell’s Soup Co. are major supporters of the drive, which also relies on the backing of the National Rural Letter Carriers Association, the Feeding America food bank network, the United Way of America and its local United Ways, the AFL-CIO Community Services network and countless local sponsors.
“All citizens need do is to place a box or sack of non-perishable food next to their mailbox before their letter carrier delivers mail on Saturday, May 11,” he said. “The carrier will do all the rest. The food is taken to the Statesboro Food Bank where it is made available for needy families.”
Holli Deal Bragg may be reached at (912) 489-9414.