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Letters carriers collect tons of food

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Hundreds of people throughout Denton County did their part to “Stamp Out Hunger” on Saturday May 8th as part of the National Association of Letter Carriers Food Drive. Letter carriers collected 17,970 pounds of donated food during the 18th annual event benefiting the Denton Community Food Center.

The total amount of food donated to the center could rise in the coming days as corporate donations are still being processed. The center purchases some of its food from the Tarrant Area Food Bank at a deep discount, so for every one dollar donated, the center can buy four pounds of food.

“The drive was definitely a success, especially given the state of the local economy,” said Tom Newell, Board Chair for the Denton Community Food Center. “The amount of food we collected this year is really close to last year’s numbers. We could still conceivably get even closer to what we collected last year with the monetary donations still coming in. The money we collect makes up four or five thousand pounds of food for the drive.”

Dozens of community volunteers worked in shifts at the Denton Community Food Center unloading the mail trucks and sorting food, as well as staffing donation tables set up at the Kroger store on Teasley Lane and the Brookshire’s store on Interstate 35E.

Groups of volunteers from Sally Beauty Supply, DATCU Credit Union, Grace Pointe Church, American Red Cross Denton Chapter, Denton Kiwanis and more donated their time and demonstrated their commitment to LIVE UNITED.

“Our food drive volunteers showed an incredible amount of support and really brought out all their strength and energy to make a difference to our community and the many people needing emergency assistance,” said Brooke Moore, Senior Community Impact Officer at United Way of Denton County.

Summertime is a challenge for the Denton Community Food Center, said Newell, so the food collected during this drive is especially important.

“About 45 percent of our yearly donations come in between mid-November and mid-December,” said Newell. “We’re on everyone’s mind during the holidays and subsequently, summer is our hardest time.”

Emergency food assistance is an ongoing, and even growing, need in this community, added Newell. Despite collecting 18,000 pounds of food in one day, it will not last long.

“We’ll go through what we collected on Saturday in about three weeks,” Newell said. “I know it’s a bit of a downer, but it really puts in perspective how great the need is out there.”

If you would like to make a donation to the Denton Community Food Center, you can mail a check to P.O. Box 2121, Denton, Texas 76202 or call 940-382-0807 for more information.

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