Letter to the Editor

Food drive thanks

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Did you know that participating in the National Association of Letter Carriers National Food Drive is voluntary? I am well aware of this because I am the director for the Upper Des Moines outreach offices for three area counties, and the Spirit Lake letter carriers are the only ones in my area who commit to this service project each year. This year they collected 2,800 pounds of food along with $10 from our wonderful Spirit Lake residents! Letter carriers and volunteers give of their free time to make sure our pantry stays strong.

UDMO's fiscal year begins Oct. 1, and for the first 6 months we have provided 203 pantries to 160 households...that is nearly double the amount from the same period last year. Each pantry provides a 3 to 5 day supply of food for a family plus we also provide other surplus foods to another 160 families. So, you can imagine how much food this office provides because of the generosity of area residents. But perhaps you didn't realize your donation actually can mean much more than just food assistance. Often when someone comes to us for food assistance we are able to ascertain other needs and provide or refer to additional resources that help lead toward the goal of self sufficiency.

A special thank you goes to Ken Henderson, President of the NALC Branch in Spirit Lake for organizing the drive each year, and much gratitude to the letter carriers, volunteers and to all who gave on behalf of everyone who will access our food pantry.

Sincerely,

Laurie Ruf

Upper Des Moines Opportunity, Inc.