Help ‘stamp out hunger’ this Saturday

Published 12:00 am Thursday, May 12, 2011

Help ‘Stamp Out Hunger’ on Saturday by placing a bag or two of non-perishable food items at your mailbox before your carrier delivers the mail. It will be donated to the local Christian Service Center food bank. | Courtesy photo

Local residents will soon have a chance to do their part to “stamp out hunger” in the annual event sponsored by the National Association of Letter Carriers in conjunction with the postal service.

The event, which is held to help feed families in all 50 states, will be held Sat., May 14.

Donations will benefit those Americans who would otherwise go hungry or suffer from poor nutrition – especially children and the elderly. And, with the recent destructive storms in Alabama, the need is even more urgent.

“Roughly 49.1 million families do not have secure meals all the time,” said Andalusia’s acting postmaster Mike Kolmetz. “That’s one reason the NALC (National Association of Letter Carriers) started the food drive. I was a city carrier when they started it, and it went over well during my entire career here.”

Non-perishable items such as canned meats and fish, soup and beans are suggested, as well as peanut butter, juice, pasta, canned vegetables, cereal and rice. Food drive organizers ask that glass containers and items beyond their expiration dates not be included in donations.

Those wanting to participate may place their donations in one or more plastic grocery bags at their mailbox on Saturday before the letter carrier arrives with the day’s mail. The letter carrier will deliver the food to the local post office, where it will be consolidated with other donations and delivered to local food banks and pantries.

Kolmetz said the Andalusia Post Office will donate items collected to the Christian Service Center.

“It happens that most food banks have dwindled down to bare cabinets,” he said. “That’s why they picked May to assist our local communities.”

Locally, the Christian Service Center distributes about 3,000 pounds of food weekly, and to meet that need the center relies on help from the community in the form of food donations and monetary donations.

Last year, the center gave away nearly 145,000 pounds of food.