PAWTUCKET — Your friendly neighborhood letter carrier is hoping to find some canned goods left by the mailbox to deliver back to a national food drive that takes place on Saturday, May 14.
Pawtucket Mayor Donald Grebien and James E. Langlois, president of Branch No. 55 of the National Association of Letter Carriers, kicked off the 19th annual NALC Stamp Out Hunger National Food Drive on Thursday morning at a press conference at City Hall.
Postal customers wishing to donate food are asked to leave non-perishable canned good donations near their mailbox on the morning of May 14. Letter carriers will pick up the food when they deliver the mail.
Grebien urged residents to support the annual food drive conducted by the National Association of Letter Carriers. He noted that last year, 77.1 million pounds in food donations was collected for people in need. “Unfortunately, that represents a 30 percent increase in need over the previous year,” Grebien said.
“I want to stress the importance of the need with the economy the way it is. We're doing everything we can to make people aware of the food drive and how they can help out” said Grebien, who placed his own donation of canned goods in a collection bin in the lobby at City Hall..
In addition to the letter carriers' pick-up, Joe Silvestri, director of operations for Spumoni's Restaurant at 1537 Newport Ave. in Pawtucket, is offering a program called “5 for 5.” Anyone who brings in five non-perishable canned goods to the restaurant between now and May 14 will receive a $5 coupon to Spumoni's.
Langlois said that since its inception 19 years ago, the Stamp Out Hunger Food Drive has collected over one billion pounds of food for the needy.
This year, more than 10,000 cities and towns across the nation will be participating.
Langlois thanked the mayor for his help in promoting the endeavor, as well as John Haidemenos, principal of the Jacqueline M. Walsh School for the Visual and Performing Arts and the JMW students for their work in designing posters for the food drive. The posters will be placed at strategic locations throughout the city to remind people of the event.