Letter carriers across the country will be picking up more than mail on Saturday, May 11. This weekend marks the annual Stamp Out Hunger Food Drive, an event organized by the National Association of Letter Carriers.

City residents are encouraged to leave donations of non-perishable food items by their mailboxes on Saturday, May 11 to be collected by the letter carriers. The Salvation Army of Michigan City is pleased to be the local recipient of these donations, filling the shelves of its food pantry with the items given so generously by the community. These items stay in Michigan City and will go to families in need.

Currently, the food pantry is in most need of protein sources – canned meats, peanut butter, and other high protein
items, although any non-perishable food items that are not open or expired are accepted. The food pantry also accepts donations of diapers, paper products, and personal hygiene items.

Major Becky Simmons, who oversees the local Salvation Army alongside her husband, Major Dale Simmons, said even if it’s one can of vegetables or a single jar of peanut butter, every little bit helps.

Last year, letter carriers toted 11,962 pounds of food during the Stamp Out Hunger Food Drive, and the goal this year is to surpass that number.

Hundreds of families visit The Salvation Army food pantry every month to receive food – all with varying degrees of
need. “About half of our clients are on fixed incomes and depend on our assistance every month,” Major Becky Simmons said, noting that the other half of clients are families with income who may just need occasional assistance to make ends meet.

“This food drive comes at the perfect time of year,” she said. “Children will be out of school over the coming summer
months and, without school breakfast and lunch available, there is more strain on our low-income families to put food on the table – especially now as we are all facing the rising cost of food.”

This food drive is organized locally by the National Association of Letter Carriers. Nathaniel Phillips, a Michigan City letter carrier with the U.S. Postal Service, said, “As letter carriers, we are out in the community every day, we know our community and we see people who are in need. This is a way that we can give back and help our neighbors.”

More information about the Stamp Out Hunger Food Drive can be found by visiting
www.nalc.org/community-service/food-drive or by contacting The Salvation Army of Michigan City at (219) 874-6885.