Countdown to NALC Food Drive is on
Taken from the May 2013 issue of The Postal Record
“All of the hard work, the planning, the meetings, the checklists—all of that is about to pay off,” NALC Presi- dent Fredric Rolando said. “And our customers who desperately need this food will be the true beneficiaries of this massive, nationwide effort.”
The 21st annual drive is Saturday, May 11, and more than 1,400 NALC branches in just about every city, state and territory will have letter carriers, family members and thousands of vol- unteers out and about to help collect, sort and distribute the cans, boxes and jars of non-perishable food items left in bags next to costumers’ mailboxes.
The NALC’s effort is the nation’s largest one-day food-collection drive.
“Since food pantries and other service organizations are pretty much tapped out by the time our drive rolls around,” Rolando said, “this infusion of food comes at just the right time.”
In fact, the second Saturday in May was specifically chosen for the annual event. By that time, pantry shelves filled up through winter-holiday generosity are often bare or nearly so by late spring—a sad reflection of the reality that wide- spread hunger in America is a tough problem to solve. Also, school programs that provide free or reduced-cost meals to students typically do not continue operation during summer months.
Last year, the food drive gathered more than 70 million pounds of food, bringing our grand total to 1.2 billion pounds.
“It’s fun to set goals, to strive for better collection numbers and break records,” Rolando said, “but all any of us ask is that you try your best to collect as much food as you can. Helping our customers feed their hungry families is our real goal.”
Friends pitch in to help
Continuing the tradition begun by his father, Bil, Family Circus cartoonist
Jeff Keane has provided special promo- tional food drive artwork featuring the familiar characters of Billy, Dolly, Jeffy and P.J. helping to carry a sack of food out to the mailbox by the curb.
Also back this year as the drive’s national celebrity spokesperson is musician Nick Cannon, the host of TV’s “America’s Got Talent.” Cannon appears in a special food drive public service announcement made available to TV and radio stations to help promote the food drive. (Cannon’s video, along with a wide variety of other useful information and artwork, can be found on the Food Drive’s web page at nalc.org.)
“The NALC is truly grateful for the help we get each year, to reach so many neighborhoods all on one day,” President Rolando said. The food drive’s national and regional partners this year are the National Rural Letter Carriers’ Association, Valpak, United Way Worldwide, Campbell Soup, the AFL-CIO, the USPS, Feeding America, Uncle Bob’s Self Storage (with loca- tions in 25 states), AARP and its “Drive to End Hunger” campaign, GLS Companies, Source Direct Plastics, the Publix grocery store chain and Valas- sis/Red Plum. PR