By Darla Shelden
City Sentinel Reporter
The Regional Food Bank of Oklahoma is the recipient of more than 300,000 pounds of food so far that has been collected in the Oklahoma City metro-area as a result of of the Feeding Hope and Letter Carriers’ Food and Fund Drive.
Letter carriers in 195 central and western Oklahoma cities helped “Stamp Out Hunger” by collecting donations from residents on their mail routes on Saturday, May 14.
Even though the one-day Letter Carrier portion of the food drive is over, more than 160 business locations in the Oklahoma City area are holding employee-driven food drives and individual donations can be still be dropped off at your local post office or Oklahoma City Fire Station through Thursday, May 26.
Monetary donations can be made online at feedinghope.org or by calling 405-600-3136.
Donations may also be mailed to: Regional Food Bank of Oklahoma, Attn: Feeding Hope, PO Box 270968, Oklahoma City, OK, 73137-0968.
For every dollar donated, the Regional Food Bank is able to provide the equivalent of five meals. A $10 donation will provide 50 meals, or a $25 donation will provide 125 meals.
“I want to thank the letter carriers and everyone who made a donation to help fight hunger in Oklahoma,” said Rodney Bivens, executive director of the Regional Food Bank of Oklahoma.
“Because of your support, the Regional Food Bank, and its partner agencies, will have more food available to help feed our hungry neighbors. Together, we can solve hunger.”
Contributing to the success of the food drive were individual donors, organizational sponsors, and numerous businesses. More than 550 volunteers sorted the donations at metro-area post offices before going back to the Regional Food Bank.
“Thank you for donating and impacting the lives of our neighbors,” said Steve Riggs, statewide chair of the Letter Carriers’ Food Drive. “Hunger is a silent issue, but chances are it is closer than you think. One in six Oklahomans has inconsistent access to food.”
The Feeding Hope and Letter Carriers’ Food and Fund Drive is sponsored by Devon Energy Corporation. Presenting Sponsors include: Accenture, Chesapeake Energy and the Cresap Family Foundation.
Recently, over 400 Devon Energy employees helped sort and fill pantry boxes with canned food during the eighth annual Stuff the Truck event on May 17. In a matter of four hours, Devon employees packed more than 250,000 pounds of food into boxes, enough to fill nearly six tractor-trailers.
“We are humbled by the generous support of Devon Energy and its employees,” said Bivens. “The work done by Devon’s volunteers would have taken the Regional Food Bank’s volunteer center approximately seven days to complete. That equates to a savings of nearly more than $4,600 in labor costs.”
Other sponsors include: AFL-CIO, American Fidelity Foundation, Arnold Outdoor, Bank of Oklahoma, Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Oklahoma, Express Employment Professionals, The Grainger Foundation, Homeland, JAKE FM, Journal Record, KOMA, Lamar Outdoor, La Zeta, LINN Energy, Love’s Travel Stops & Country Stores, Magic 104.1 KMGL, Marathon Oil, Mercy, National Association of Letter Carriers, National Association of Rural Letter Carriers, News 9, OGE Energy Corp., Oklahoma City Firefighters Assoc. Local 157, The Oklahoman, OU Medicine, Paycom, Riverwind Casino, Seagate Technology, Tyler Outdoor, United States Postal Service, United Supermarkets, United Way of Central Oklahoma and Valpak.
The Regional Food Bank of Oklahoma is the state’s largest private, domestic hunger relief organization and a member of Feeding America’s network of Food Banks.
The nonprofit provides enough food to feed more than 116,000 hungry Oklahomans each week through a network of more than 1,250 schools and charitable feeding programs in 53 central and western Oklahoma counties.
The results of the drive will be announced on June 21.
For more information about the Letter Carriers’ Food Drive, or to sign up for the Feeding Hope Drive, call Angie Doss at 405-604-7109 or visit regionalfoodbank.org.