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Stamp Out Hunger

Recent editorials have addressed the topic of hunger both here in Beaufort County and in eastern North Carolina.

Statistics indicate one in five people are considered “food insecure” in that they are not sure where their next meal will come from. For children under the age of 18, that number is closer to one in four.

For 20 years now, the National Association of Letter Carriers and the National Rural Letter Carriers’ Association has teamed with Campbell Soup Company, Valpak, the U.S. Postal Service, United Way, AFL-CIO, Feeding America, Uncle Bob’s Self-Storage and AARP for the largest one-day food drive in the nation. Stamp Out Hunger, conducted the second Saturday each May, is an easy way for citizens to donate food to needy families in the community.

A small donation of non-perishable foods left at your mailbox will be collected by your letter carrier. In 2011, postal workers collected over 70 million pounds of food nationwide, bringing the 20-year total to 1.1 billion pounds of food.

“This year, we enter the drive amidst a ‘perfect storm’ of high unemployment, sky-high food and gasoline prices, unprecedented budget cuts to federal nutrition programs, limits on charitable-giving incentives and a decline in federal commodities,” said Feeding America President Vicki Escarra. “Some of our larger food banks are reporting declines in food inventories of as much as 35 percent from last year.

“Few are more committed to ending hunger in America than letter carriers,” she added. “You are the ones on the front line of the poverty battlefield. You see and console the very same people who come to us for emergency food assistance, often before we see them.”

Take a moment this week to make one of the simplest acts of kindness for a neighbor in need. Your small donation will go a long way to stamp out the larger hunger problem.

For more information, visit www.helpstampouthunger.com.