California State Employees Continue to Break Records in Annual Food Drive!

California State Employees Continue to Break Records in Annual Food Drive!

The California Department of Food & Agriculture (CDFA) is once again hosting the California State Employees Food Drive (SEFD). The 2017 drive began on November 6 and goes through the holiday season until January 12. Nearly 100 state agencies in the Sacramento region participate in this drive that has been going on for over 25 years. Each participating agency elects a coordinator to motivate employees with ideas and events to encourage donations. Agencies compete with their own individual departments as well as with the other agencies in town, making for a fun way to feed families and contribute to their community. Each agency gets food drive credit for not only food donated to Sacramento Food Bank & Family Services (SFBFS), but also Run to Feed the Hungry registrations, turkeys donated at the turkey drive, food donations outside of Sacramento County and of course financial donations. Each dollar donated is converted to 2.5 pounds of food.

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Stamp Out Hunger Success

Every year, SFBFS partners with the National Letter Carrier’s Association to participate in StampOutHunger. The largest one-day food drive in the nation takes place every second Saturday in May where letter carriers in more than 10,000 cities and towns across America collect food from their postal customers. The idea is simple. Go through your pantry, find non-perishable items like canned beans and vegetables, peanut butter or pasta, fill the specially marked Stamp Out Hunger bag you received in your mail a few days before and leave it on your porch. Your letter carrier will do the rest!

On Saturday, May 14, SFBFS participated in the 24th annual Stamp Out Hunger Food Drive right here in Sacramento. Seventeen post office locations across Sacramento acted as a hub for the delivery of goods for the greater half of the afternoon. Without the help of several volunteers at each location, there is no way we could have kept up! At one point, at the Fort Sutter location, we had three letter carriers with VERY full trucks ready to be unloaded. Our volunteers sprung into action making sure to set aside any glass items and filled our makeshift bins. SFBFS then loaded the trucks up for their journey to our Distribution Center. There, even more volunteers were waiting with the daunting task of sorting and organizing all the donations. In total, the day produced 173,869 pounds of food!

SFBFS is proud to partner with the National Letter Carrier’s Association for this incredible one-day event. Being able to see the community come together for one cause in such a short time frame was very inspirational. I was even more excited to see so many young people volunteering. At multiple locations, I saw middle schoolers, high schoolers and even elementary students volunteering with their parents. I asked one little girl how she found out about this and she replied, “My Mom told me about it…but I wanted to help.” It’s incredible what we can accomplish when we come together as a unit. Due to the abundance of donations received through this food drive, SFBFS will be able to supply food to so many families in need. Great work, Sacramento!

Submitted by: Elise Hawkins, SFBFS' Communications Officer

Peanut Butter Round Up

Who doesn’t love peanut butter? With the exception of those with peanut allergies, I bet many of us reflect fondly of enjoying peanut butter sandwiches, ants on a log or event grandma’s famous peanut butter cookies. But not all families have the ability to purchase this delicious and protein-rich staple.

Each month, Sacramento Food Bank & Family Services (SFBFS) provides food to 135,000 men, women and children thanks to 220 partner agencies. Through this network of church pantries, soup kitchens, schools and smaller food programs, SFBFS is able to get food, including produce and healthy shelf stable items like peanut butter to those who need it most.

Summertime, however, is an interesting time of year to think about food. It is often the months where food banks receive the least amount of in-kind food donations. Concurrently, it is when greatest need occurs.   With classes letting out soon, our communities will see an increase in hunger among children, as they will no longer have access to school meals during the summer. To help meet the need, Save Mart Supermarkets will be holding its annual peanut butter drive, Peanut Butter Roundup.

 

Jif peanut butter and Smucker’s jelly are each giving the campaign a boost by offering a Buy One/Give One promotion, making it easy for shoppers to participate. From May 18 to 31, every time a Save Mart shopper buys one jar of peanut butter or jelly, they will receive a second one for free to donate! Collection barrels for SFBFS will be located in the checkstand area for customers to place their donations. Last year, Save Mart stores (along with its sister stores Lucky) collectively received nine tons of peanut butter for three dozen food banks, including SFBFS. This is enough peanut butter and jelly to make more than a quarter-million sandwiches and feed lots of hungry kids!

New this year is the “roundup” feature at the cash register. In addition to the Buy One/Give One option, shoppers can roundup their grocery tab, and 100% of the change will benefit local food banks such as SFBFS.

The Peanut Butter Roundup is meant to raise awareness of the struggles many families experience during the summer break. Peanut Butter makes for a perfect donation because it’s high in protein, shelf-stable and kids enjoy it. Please help spread the love by telling your family and friends to participate! Even better, post pictures or brag about donations on social media, using the hashtag #PeanutButterRoundup to help the cause.

 

Submitted by Kelly Siefkin, VP of Communications & Marketing

KidsCan KickOff at CalExpo…Say that five times fast!

Sacramento Food Bank & Family (SFBFS) with KCRA3 every year for the KidsCan Food Drive campaign. More than 200 Sacramento County schools participate to raise non-perishable food items for families in need. This was my first year being able to participate in this event and it truly was an experience to remember.

On Friday, October 9, I had the opportunity to attend the KidsCan Kickoff at CalExpo. The event got going at 4:30 a.m. Luckily I got to sleep in and take the 3:30 p.m. – 7:30 p.m. shift! When I arrived at CalExpo, I was greeted by SFBFS staff, KCRA reporters, cameramen and generous volunteers. Cars, vans and even motorcycles arrived with non-perishable items for donation. It was really awesome to see people, young and old, coming out to support the community. Everyone arrived with a smile on their face and a genuine interest in supporting those in need.

After a few hours collecting donations, it was, “Lights , Camera, Action,” time! KCRA had a series of live shots and interviewed me on-air about three or four times. I was asked what kind of items SFBFS was seeking, how this event was impactful and who the donated items would be serving in our community. As I reflected on my responses, it really was incredible to think just how many people are affected by food insecurity. After my 12-hour day, I went home and bought some Chipotle for dinner. Not everyone has that luxury. I get to eat when I’m hungry. Some have to go without. This kind of event was a great, real-life reminder of what it means to be grateful.

Submitted by: Elise Hawkins
Sacramento Food Bank & Family Services’ Communications Officer