“We are estimating our food drive has helped in feeding over 227 families this year!” said an excited Angie Burris-Hawkins following another successful Stuff the Truck food drive Wednesday, Nov. 16, to benefit South County food banks.
It was the third holiday food drive sponsored by Cleanrite-Buildrite, a business with offices in Anderson and Redding.
“I don’t have an amount in tons of food, but these food boxes are complete meals with lots of extras in each box including oatmeal, pasta, pasta sauce, cereal, bread, tuna, granola bars, canned veggies, soup, juice, potatoes, chili and rice,” she said.
“We tried to make sure every family gets all the food we can give,” Burris-Hawkins said.
Students from Anderson Union High School’s Cub Connections helped immensely in collecting canned foods for the donation effort.
After a month of gathering food, Anderson High School students gathered more than 300 non-perishable food items, said Clarinda Ahern, facilitator for Cub Connections.
According to Ahern, students started the campus food drive contest on Oct. 17 of homecoming week.
Freshman Rosa Saeturn won by donating 27 cans of food, said Ahern.
Then last Tuesday, Nov. 15, students stood outside the Safeway in Anderson with banners and a flyer that students made asking shoppers the question: Have you ever been hungry for a week?
“The flyer had facts on it about how many families go hungry, soup kitchens and the fact that 30 percent of families are forced to choose between buying food and paying for medical care or medicine,” said Ahern.
According to Ahern, the students decided to take the food they had gathered from their school food drive to the Cleanrite-Buildrite “Stuff the Truck” event held last Wednesday in the Safeway parking lot.
Ahern said the students knew the Stuff the Truck event was a local event and that the food would go to local families.
“This is the first year Cub Connection has done a canned food drive and I think it was a huge success. The kids were very involved and extremely enthusiastic throughout the fundraising,” said Ahern.
During the day-long food drive, Maria Orozco from Win-River Casino and Redding Rancheria also surprised Burris-Hawkins with a $1,000 donation.
“It’s a great feeling knowing everyone has pulled together to help. We, as a community, will be making a difference in someone’s holiday this year!” Burris-Hawkins said.