HOLT, Fla., May 9, 2017—Letter carriers across the United States are asking for food donations Saturday.
According to the United Way of Okaloosa and Walton Counties, nearly 170,000 pounds of food was collected during last year’s drive. United Way Worldwide is one of the food drive partners.
The Holt Community Food Pantry is one of the recipients of food items collected each year.
Holt’s pantry gets the majority of its food items, such as frozen meats, rice, beans, etc., from Feeding the Gulf Coast in Milton, a member of the Feeding America Network.
“Most canned goods are not usually available through them,” said Donna Ash, food pantry manager. “The mail carriers collect a large quantity and variety of canned goods that help us provide for approximately 100 families per month.”
Held the second Saturday in May each year, the national food drive, which began in 1993, happens in more than 10,000 cities and towns across America, Holt included.
“Too many people in this country are going hungry,” NALC president Fredric Rolando said. “We know this to be true because we see it as we deliver to every address in America at least six days a week.”
How this works is people set their food items in their mailboxes before mail is delivered Saturday. Letter carriers will pick up these items as they complete their regular mail routes.
If food is not picked up Saturday, letter carriers will pick up missed items the following Monday.
“Anyone who missed donating during Saturday’s drive can bring their food items to the Holt post office,” said Joyce Arnett, Holt postmaster.
People can use any type of bag,
paper or plastic,
for the food drive.
Unlike previous drives, there will not be specially designated bags for the drive. People can use any type of bad, paper or plastic, for the food.
For those who want to donate directly to the Holt food pantry can do so at any time. The pantry also accepts fresh garden vegetables and fruits from local farmers, said Ash.
“Anyone can contribute to the pantry through First Baptist Church of Holt,” she said. “They can purchase any items and drop them off at the church or Holt Water Works, or call for pickup at 850-240-5287 or 850-537-2170.”
Monetary donations can be mailed to: First Baptist Church of Holt Food Pantry, P. O. Box 38, Holt, FL 32564.
According to the NALC website, the food drive is “an effort to raise national awareness about the real, ongoing problem of hunger in every community, and it’s a sincere attempt to use our unique delivery network to do something about it.”
“The food drive is just one of the many ways letter carriers give back to our communities,” Rolando said.