By LORI NICKEL firstname.lastname@example.org | Posted: Monday, March 30, 2015 9:39 am
Food drive a success! Over 80 volunteers showed up at the Lonsdale Area Food Shelf on Saturday morning to collect donations left on doorsteps around town. Above, some volunteers are shown inspecting and sorting the thousands of items brought in from the food drive. (Lori Nickel/News Review)
There are about 40 families living within the Lonsdale zip code that use the Lonsdale Area Food Shelf each month. To help support neighbors who have fallen on hard times, volunteers came together for the second consecutive Saturday morning in March to fight hunger in the community.
March is Minnesota Food Share Month, where food shelves around the state can receive grant funding based on how much food and money is donated during the month. These numbers and other statistics, like how many people are served each year, are used to determine the amount of the grant to be received from the Greater Minneapolis Council of Churches.
The Lonsdale Area Food Shelf, located at 130 Delaware St. SE, initiated two separate campaigns in March to raise awareness and to bring in donations. With the help of the churches in town, they carried out Pack the Pews; inviting parishioners to bring in food and personal care items to donate on the weekend of March 20-22. That same weekend, 80 volunteers were divided into 16 routes around Lonsdale to deliver door hangers asking residents to leave food donations on their doorsteps the following Saturday, March 28, during a food drive.
Executive Director Tami Heimer said the community responded by donating 1,724.60 in both pounds of food and/or dollars during Saturday’s drive when those same volunteers collected donations between 9 a.m. and noon. Added to Pack the Pews and other donations throughout the month, the food shelf’s goal of collecting 9,000 pounds of food and/or dollars was surpassed.
So far this month the food shelf has collected 3,131.28 pounds of food and $8,433.33, for a combined total of 11,564.61. That surpasses last year’s total of 11,065. The money that is donated will be used to purchase frozen meats, produce and other items that will be needed in the upcoming months.
“We are so thankful for the volunteers and for this building,” Heimer said, while showing how the space at the Delaware Street location was being used for the inspection and sorting of the food. Volunteers looked at expiration dates, packaging and checked for recalled food items.
Heimer added that there is still time to donate to the effort. The grant will include any food or monetary donations through March 31. To donate or to volunteer, contact Heimer by calling 507-744-7453, or by email@example.com.