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Letter Carriers Seek to Stamp Out Hunger in Utah This Weekend

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Friday, May 8, 2015   

SALT LAKE CITY - Thousands of people in Utah will be joining forces with letter carriers Saturday for one of the nation's biggest food drives.

Ginette Bott, chief development officer for the Utah Food Bank, said Stamp Out Hunger helps communities across the state feed families that are struggling to get by. She said the numbers from last year's event tell the story: "640,000 meals were provided from that one-day event.

"It is an important quantity of food," she said, "and it's incredibly crucial to those small towns that have folks participating on that Saturday."

Residents are encouraged to place a bag of non-perishable food donations next to their mailboxes by 9 a.m. Saturday for pickup by their local letter carriers. The food collected is taken to the local post office where it's sorted by volunteers.

As the school year is wrapping up, Bott said, the timing of Stamp Out Hunger also is important because students who qualify for free and reduced lunches at school will need to be fed from another source.

"So immediately we see families turn to the pantries for the 90 days of the summer vacation," she said. "So our most difficult time, really, is June, July and August - because the demand skyrockets."

Bott said one in five Utah children doesn't get enough to eat on a regular basis and about 450,000 people in the state don't know where their next next meal will come from. Nationwide, last year's Stamp Out Hunger collected more than 72 million pounds of food.


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