Letter carriers collecting food donations with Saturday mail

By Scott Hewitt, Columbian social issues & neighborhoods reporter

Published:

 

You can help stamp out hunger. It doesn't even cost a stamp.

Mail carriers across the nation will pick up food donations along with the outgoing mail Saturday and make a special delivery to local food banks. It's the annual National Association of Letter Carriers Food Drive.

"The Food Drive gives everyone the chance to be part of something bigger than anything we could do alone," said Portland Postmaster Shawneen Betha. "It's our Postal Service customers who really make the difference. Every can and package of food collected makes a difference in someone's life."

Sometime this week you should receive in your mail a plastic, biodegradable food bag. Fill it with nonperishable food donations and place it by your mailbox early Saturday morning. (If you somehow miss the bag, any sturdy plastic or paper bag will do.) Your mail carrier will see that its gets safely to the Clark County Food Bank, which will see that it gets safely to hungry people right here in Clark County.

Among the best items to donate are: high-protein foods such as canned meats and canned or dried beans; canned fruits and vegetables (preferably with reduced sodium and reduced sugar); whole-grain foods such as brown rice, whole grain cereal and whole-wheat pasta; soups, chilies and stews (preferably with reduced sodium and reduced fat); 100 percent fruit juices; unsaturated cooking oils; and other healthy-choice foods.

Please, no rusty or unlabeled cans, glass containers, perishable items, homemade items, noncommercial canned or packaged items, alcoholic beverages, mixes or soda, open or used items.

If you miss your letter carrier's May 11 visit, drop off your food donations at any post office by May 15.