This Saturday, May 10, 2014, Central New Jersey residents can help eradicate hunger without walking one step beyond their mailboxes. The National Association of Letter Carriers (NALC) is conducting its annual Stamp Out Hunger Food Drive and will be collecting non-perishable food donations as they deliver mail along their established postal routes. Residents are asked to leave food donations in a sturdy bag next to their mailboxes before Saturday’s regular mail delivery.
This is the 22nd year for Stamp Out Hunger, the nation’s largest single-day food drive, and approximately 175,000 letter carriers will be participating. According to a statement released by the NALC, the Postal Service reaches 5.1 million U.S. addresses six days a week, making it an effective means of spreading the word about the need for food. Additionally, mailbox pick up makes it easy for those who want to donate. Suggested food donations include canned goods, such as soup, vegetables, meat and fish, as well as peanut butter, pasta, cereal, and rice.
According to the NALC, last year’s Stamp Out Hunger food drive garnered 74.4 million pounds of donations, the second-highest collection since Stamp Out Hunger’s inception in 1992. Nearly 1.3 billion pounds of food in total have been collected over the 22 years.
Letter carriers will deliver the donated food to local food banks, pantries or shelters, including many affiliated with Feeding America, one of the national partners in the drive. Also partnering with NALC are United Way, the AARP Drive to End Hunger, and the Camden, New Jersey based, Campbell Soup Company.
Other civic and volunteer groups helping in this effort are the Boy Scouts, the Girl Scouts, Salvation Army, local Rotary Clubs, Catholic Charities, American Legion, Veterans of Foreign Wars, and many other community organizations.
There are 49 million Americans, including children and senior citizens, who face food insecurity on a daily basis. Over 1.2 million New Jersey residents are included in this statistic, according to the Community FoodBank of New Jersey.
"Many people in this country still go hungry every day," NALC President Fredric Rolando said. "We are honored to be able to help people in need by leading an effort that brings out the best in so many Americans….”
Further information about the NALC’s Stamp Out Hunger food collection is available from your letter carrier or local post office, or by logging onto the NACL website.