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Letter carrier food drive this Saturday

For the 20th year, Springfield Branch 45 of the National Association of Letter Carriers, in conjunction with the U.S. Post Office and the AFL-CIO, will participate in the Stamp Out Hunger Food Drive.

The effort takes place on Saturday and will help needy families in Clark, Champaign and Logan Counties. All the food collected will be sent to the Second Harvest Food Bank.

“We’re just trying to fill up the food bank,” said Barb Eggers, Second Harvest client services supervisor. She pointed out this is a slow time of the year for donations, and they are also looking to stock up for the summer, when schools will be out and the demand for help from the food bank rises.

Eggers said the public can participate in the food drive by placing bags of canned goods and other non-perishable food items near mailboxes on walking routes or in mailboxes on rural routes. Food donations can also be dropped off at the food bank, 701 E. Columbia St., from 11 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. Organizers ask that you not bring food to the Post Office.

Last year, more than 26,000 pounds of food was collected locally and the goal is to at least match that total this year. Eggers said as much as 38,000 thousand pounds has been collected in the past, but the total has dropped in recent years.

Anna Plataniotis, community engagement supervisor at the food bank, indicated “when the economy goes down, it’s harder for people to donate.”

At the same time, the need for more donations has increased.

Postal employees will also be conducting similar food drives on Saturday in surrounding communities, including New Carlisle, Enon, Northridge and South Charleston.

“All the food donations are distributed in the areas where they are collected,” Plataniotis said.

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