Help stamp out hunger
Editor of the Reformer:
Saturday, May 14, marks the 24th anniversary of the National Association of Letter Carriers "Stamp Out Hunger Food Drive." Letter carriers walk throughout the community every day, often coming face to face with a sad reality for too many, hunger.
So, each year on the second Saturday in May, letter carriers across the country collect non-perishable food donations from our customers. These donations go directly to local food pantries to provide for families in our own community in need of help.
Last year, on this one day over 71 million pounds of food was collected nationally. Over the course of its 23 year history the drive has collected well over one billion pounds of food, thanks to the Postal Service's universal network that spans the entire nation, including Puerto Rico, Guam and the U.S. Virgin Islands.
The need is great. Currently 49 million Americans— one in six — are unsure where their next meal is coming from. Nearly 16 million children feel the impact of hunger on their overall health and ability to perform in school and 5 million seniors over age 60 have to decide between daily meals or paying for rent or needed medications.
The timing of this annual event is intentional and crucial. Food banks and pantries receive the bulk of their donations around the fall and winter holidays. By springtime many pantries are depleted, entering the summer with low supplies at a time when many school breakfast and lunch programs are not available to children in need.
Participating in this year's Stamp Out Hunger Food Drive is simple. Just leave a non-perishable food donation in a bag by your mailbox on Saturday, May 14, and your letter carrier will do the rest. Please join in America's great day of giving and help us in our fight to end hunger.
Steve Doherty, USPS, Boston, Mass., May 4