This is a guest post from Cheryl Alwine, the Milton Family Community Center Food Shelf Manager. We asked her to tell us about the National Letter Carriers Drive, which was held on Saturday, May 9th.
The Letter Carriers Drive is the nation’s largest single-day food drive, and is held annually on the second Saturday in May in 10,000 cities and towns in all 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, the Virgin Islands and Guam.
The Annual Letter Carrier’s Food Drive was always an event that we, at the Milton Family Community Center’s Food Shelf found out about on the following Monday, when we’d get a call from the post office asking us to come pick up the food they collected. There was very little promotion of the event on the part of the post office and without advance notification we had no opportunity to get the word out. The results were always minimal. We might get 10 of those white postal bins filled food.
This year though, Joe Dauscher, network relations manager at the Vermont Foodbank, reminded us of the event three weeks in advance and supplied us with the link to promotional materials. I called the post office to see if we could have post cards put in everyone’s box. We could not, without putting postage on them, but that started a conversation about what we COULD do.
The week of the food drive, I posted it daily on Facebook: MFCC’s page, our staff page, and two of Milton’s community group pages, of which I am a member. Our postmaster, Cathy Moss, personally paid for an ad in the Milton Independent the week of the food drive. The Milton Independent also ran an article about the food drive, which can be read here.
The results of simply letting our community know about the food drive resulted in a collection of 1,300 pounds (45 bins) of food, thanks to Joe’s advance email!