Stop Hunger Food Drive continues to collect goods for community
BY JESSICA SPENCER
The Stop Hunger Food Drive, hosted by the University of Mary Washington and sponsored by Campus Dining and the University Athletic Department, concluded on Wednesday, Nov. 20. The goal of the drive was to collect 3,000 pounds of food for the Fredericksburg Area Food Bank.
The food drive began on Nov. 4, and campus dining picked up the donations from residence halls yesterday on Nov. 20. Discounted canned goods were sold at the Eagles’ Nest on Nov.18.
A contest was held between residence halls and clubs to collect the most donations. The club or residence hall with the most pounds of food per person in the club or hall wins a pizza party. If a club or hall did not participate, students were able to donate food at any dining facility, the Anderson Center or the Fitness Center.
“The food drive builds community between not only the student body but also with the surrounding are. I think the food drive helps bring back awareness of how grateful we are to have all of the resources that we do on campus and from our families,” said Vance Solseth, a senior on the swimming team.
According to Rose Benedict of dining services and coordinator of the food drive, the best foods to donate include canned or boxed foods within their expiration date and in undented or unopened packaging. Donations such as canned tuna or chicken and staple items, such as pasta, pasta sauce or macaroni and cheese are the most welcomed.
“We hope to collect between 2,000 and 3,000 pounds of nonperishable foods to beat our records from years past,” said Benedict.
Solseth believes the drive is a good way to give back to the community.
“We are very grateful for all of the opportunities that we have as a team and are happy to take this opportunity to give back. Everyone deserves warm, delicious meals during the holidays and we are just happy to have the chance to help,” said Solseth.
Recently, the amount of food collected is less than years past. Benedict hopes to reignite the spirit of the drive throughout the school, rather than just in specific demographics of the school’s population.
“We had some really banner years about three to four years ago, and almost every residence hall had a box for the drive. You could see the spirit throughout campus, but in recent years numbers have been down overall. The athletes, however, are a huge help and even go to houses around the area with a bag and ask for donations,” said Benedict.
The food drive benefits the Fredericksburg community.
“All people in the Fredericksburg area who don’t have food are benefited by the drive. With numbers that need help growing because of unemployment it is a big help, everything goes straight to the community,” said Benedict.