Woodford Countians can help ‘Stamp Out Hunger’ May 12
Residents of the community are being asked to contribute nonperishable food items during the 25th annual Stamp Out Hunger Food Drive on Saturday, May 12. Letter carriers will again pick up their donations during the second-largest annual food drive in Woodford County.
Stamp Out Hunger allows the Food Pantry for Woodford County to replenish its inventory for the summer months.
“The timing’s real important because the majority of our food drives are in October, November and December – around the holidays when people are thinking about giving,” said Bill Phelps, a food pantry volunteer and board president.
The Stamp Out Hunger Food Drive will help replenish its inventory until other food drives happen later in the year, he added.
Currently, director Sharon Hardin said the Food Pantry for Woodford County is helping an average of 100 families in the community each month. Because the nonprofit is currently not receiving the quantity of government commodities that it’s received in the past (based on a low unemployment rate), she said local donations are needed now more than ever.
“We also give out toiletries to clients out there – toothbrush, toothpaste, shampoo … So if people are thinking about that,” those items may also be donated, said Phelps.
Hardin said the Food Pantry for Woodford County received about 4,300 pounds of food items during last year’s Stamp Out Hunger, organized by the National Association of Letter Carriers (NALC).
“This is a wonderful partnership with the postal service and we really appreciate it,” said Phelps.
On April 27, County Judge-Executive John Coyle and Midway Mayor Grayson Vandegrift proclaimed May 12, 2018 as “Letter Carrier Food Drive Day” in Woodford County. The proclamation cited Stamp Out Hunger as one example of how letter carriers make a difference.
“It’s excellent for the community and it’s good for the post office,” said Versailles Postmaster Patrick Rogers of the annual food drive organized by the NALC beginning in 1991.
“Everybody reaps a benefit from it. The community helps out the needy, and the post office and the (mail) carriers that are involved in (Stamp Out Hunger) get the reward of helping someone.” He credited his carriers and longtime coordinator Thad Baker for their willingness to work additional hours to ensure their community’s hungry are being fed.
Residents should anticipate receiving yellow plastic and paper NALC bags for their donations this week, according to Rogers. Donations should be placed in bags and boxes next to mailboxes so they are visible to letter carriers. No food items in glass jars or containers are accepted for safety reasons.
Donations may also be dropped off in the lobbies at the Midway and Versailles post offices. “And a lot of time,” said Rogers, “it carries over a few days after the food drive if they missed or forgot about” Stamp Out for Hunger.