The National Association of Letter Carriers (NALC) May food drive was postponed due to the Corona virus but the need for food shelf resources continues. Bob Rosel, Austin NALC Food Drive Coordinator stated in a press release that the economic effects of the virus increased the use of food shelves locally and around the country. As summer gets in full swing and donations dwindle help in restocking food shelves is needed.
To deal with this urgent situation, the NALC has developed a new plan to address the problem of food insecurity that affects one in eight Americans, including millions of children, elderly and military veterans.
Starting this week, millions of generous Americans who normally leave food by their mailbox on the second Saturday in May can accomplish the same thing via differs means, an online donation food drive.
The Stamp Out Hunger Food Drive is locally and nationally the largest single-day food collection. Last year Austin and Albert Lea letter carriers collected 40,000 lbs of food and monetary donations to benefit local food shelves. Nationally, 70 million-plus pounds of food was received. After consulting with the 1,900 NALC branches in every corner of the country, Rosel stated that a new approach to fill the food shelves was formulated.
The result: A donor drive to fit the current circumstances. This donor drive is a national effort with Americans in big cities and suburbs, in small towns and rural areas asked to contribute large or small monetary donations to the local food shelf of their choosing.
The process is simple: 1) Go to nalc.org/food 2) Select your state 3) Select your local food shelf (the Austin Salvation Army is participating) 4) Make your contribution. Rosel reported that all collections stay in the local community. This has been set up to allow every dollar raised to go directly to purchasing food for the hungry.
This online donor drive will continue while the need continues and the circumstances prevent the NALC from conducting their traditional annual food drive. The silver lining may be that instead of a one- day event this effort will continue as needed. And, food banks can purchase more food per dollar than a resident could buy and donate. The NALC is accepting contributions via the nalc.org/ food website right now and they encourage generous area residents to donate to this effort as they have to their traditional May food drive.