Wow! Stamp Out Hunger Drive Stocks UCM Food Pantry

Thank you, Letter Carriers from Union Branch 567!
Thank you, Letter Carriers from Union Branch 567!
Letter Carriers’ Stamp Out Hunger Food Drive Stocks UCM Pantry

8,372 pounds of food donations received by UCM

Photo:  Celebrating a day of hard work collecting community donations for the annual Stamp Out Hunger Food Drive at the Alexandria Post Office Annex are:  Letter Carrier Andre Washington, Letter Carrier and Union Branch event coordinator Brian McCormick, volunteer Jamie Sousa, Letter Carrier Jon Iriarte, and Alfredo Aguilar of UCM’s Food Pantry.
The 22nd annual Stamp Out Hunger Food Drive took place throughout our community on Saturday, May 10, to help stock local food pantries for the upcoming summer months.  Stamp Out Hunger is the nation’s largest single-day food collection, hosted by the National Association of Letter Carriers with other sponsors.
Local Letter Carriers from Union Branch 567 (Alexandria city and parts of southeastern Fairfax County) collected bags of food donations by their customers’ mailboxes and partnered with local pantries.  This year, United Community Ministries (UCM) received more than 4 tons of food collected at Alexandria area post offices.
Letter Carrier Brian McCormick, of the Alexandria Post Office Annex at Telegraph Road, serves as a local coordinator and champion for the event to shed light on fighting local hunger.  “The carriers really get into it and enjoy seeing who can bring in the most food donations,” he says.
“We are very grateful to the local Letter Carriers for their ongoing support to fight local hunger,” says Richard Dobber, UCM Director of Social Services.  “And we especially appreciate the large quantity of healthy food items we received this year from caring community members, including low-salt canned goods like vegetables, whole wheat pasta, low-sugar cereals, nuts, and energy bars.”
On a typical week day, 80 to 100 families visit UCM’s Food Pantry for supplemental groceries to help make ends meet.  Dobber continues, “We always have a need for individuals and groups who will sponsor food drives or contribute funds directly so that we can purchase food at discounted prices from our partners.  When you donate funds designated to the Food Pantry and encourage your friends and colleagues to do so, we call that a ‘virtual’ food drive.  You can even donate online at www.ucmagency.org.
To organize a food drive – or Virtual Food Drive – to benefit UCM’s families, contact Marcos Castillo at volunteer@ucmagency.org or 571.255-8979.

United Community Ministries (UCM at www.ucmagency.org) provides a vital connection between people in need and the people committed to helping them thrive.  UCM is celebrating its 45th anniversary of service to the community during 2014.  UCM services include:

Immediate Help.  For families and individuals in crisis, UCM provides food, financial aid, and counseling.

Education and Employment.  Services such as job training and coaching, full-day early care and learning, ESL and citizenship classes, and parental education help people achieve stability.

Community Engagement.  UCM’s neighborhood centers, with after-school programs and leadership training, engage youth and families in broader social networks for success.
Last fiscal year, thanks to generous community support, in south Fairfax County UCM provided life-changing assistance to 4,392 families.


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