Letter carriers deliver for food bank


The city of Grand Rapids is one of more than 10,000 American cities that partakes in the annual Stamp Out Hunger Food Drive. Photo via fb.com

It may not be the holiday season yet, but that doesn’t mean food drives have stopped being any less relevant.

The one coming up this weekend is considered to be one of the nation’s largest food drives in a single day.

On Saturday, May 9, the city of Grand Rapids will be one of more than 10,000 American cities partaking in the 23rd-annual Stamp Out Hunger Food Drive, a national food drive coordinated by the National Association of Letter Carriers.

The process is simple: those who wish to participate place a bag of goods by their mailbox before regular delivery time on May 9. The most needed items are canned fish and chicken, canned fruits and vegetables, beans, rice, grains, whole-grain pasta and peanut butter.

The letter carriers then pick up the bag and bring the donations to a hunger-relief organizations or nonprofits. All the food collected in Grand Rapids is going to Feeding America West Michigan Food Bank, based in Comstock Park.

“The letter carriers are one of our oldest partners in hunger relief. Year after year, they give their time and money to organize this enormous effort — our biggest food drive of the year. The food we collect on this one day will reach thousands of people,” said Ken Estelle, CEO of Feeding America West Michigan.

“The need for food hasn’t decreased in our community. We’re asking everyone to give what they can and help us Stamp Out Hunger this year.”

In 2014, approximately 94,000 pounds of food was collected in Grand Rapids for Stamp Out Hunger, which was enough to produce nearly 73,500 meals for needy people in West Michigan.

Since its inception, Stamp Out Hunger has collected more than 1 billion pounds of food to donate to hunger-relief organizations all over the U.S.

“Six days a week, letter carriers see firsthand the needs in the communities where we work, and we’re committed to helping meet those needs,” said Fredric Rolando, NALC president.

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