Letter Carriers to Deliver Hope for Those Impacted by Economy

Stamp Out Hunger food drive set for May 9

SAINT PAUL, Minn.-More than 2,000 letter carriers throughout the seven-county metro area will participate in Stamp Out Hunger on May 9, 2009 in an effort to collect food for and deliver hope to those impacted by the recession. Stamp Out Hunger is the National Association of Letter Carriers (NALC) annual food drive that locally supports Second Harvest Heartland, the Upper Midwest's largest hunger-relief organization.

"Six days a week our letter carriers deliver the mail, but on May 9 they'll deliver hope-the hope that, as a community, we can work together to Stamp Out Hunger," said Pam Donato, president, National Association of Letter Carriers Branch 9, Minneapolis.

According to Donato, metro-area letter carriers collected nearly one million pounds of food during last year's one-day food drive. This year's metro-wide goal is to collect 1.2 million pounds of food. "This year's food drive is more important than ever as a record number of Minnesotans are now unemployed and countless others face economic uncertainty. One million pounds of food will go a long way toward helping our hungry neighbors."

"There is no question that the economy is hitting a lot of Minnesotans hard and forcing more and more people to seek help putting food on their table," said Rob Zeaske, executive director of Second Harvest Heartland. "On May 9, helping those in need is as easy as a trip to the mailbox. Stamp Out Hunger is an opportunity for the community to join together in the crucial fight to end hunger."

In the coming weeks, postal customers will receive a blue Stamp Out Hunger donation bag with their mail. They simply need to fill the bag with non-perishable, non-breakable food items and leave it by their mail box on May 9. Letter carriers from Minneapolis Branch 9 and St. Paul Branch 28 will collect the donations as they deliver the mail on their regular metro and suburban residential routes in the seven-county metro area. The food will be unloaded from postal vehicles at 28 Cub Foods locations throughout the afternoon and will then be shipped to Second Harvest Heartland's Minneapolis Service Center, located at 3100 California Street NE, for distribution to area food shelves. The public can also support Stamp Out Hunger by visiting any Twin Cities TCF Bank location now through May 9 to make a financial donation.

In its 17th year, Stamp Out Hunger is the nation's largest single-day food drive. Last year, letter carriers nationwide collected more than 73 million pounds of food. Local sponsors include National Association of Letter Carriers Branch 9, Minneapolis and Branch 28, St. Paul; Cub Foods; TCF Bank; Minnesota Transport Services Association; and WCCO Radio. For a complete listing of participating Cub Foods and TCF Bank locations or to learn more about Stamp Out Hunger or how to help, visit www.stampouthunger.2harvest.org.

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