Postal service, food pantry team up

Published 9:46 pm Friday, May 6, 2016

 Selma Area Food Bank executive director Jeff Harrison and postmaster Chandra Fleming pose for a photo with a bag of groceries. The annual Stamp Out Hunger food drive will be held Saturday, May 14 and will benefit the Selma Area Food Bank.

Selma Area Food Bank executive director Jeff Harrison and postmaster Chandra Fleming pose for a photo with a bag of groceries. The annual Stamp Out Hunger food drive will be held Saturday, May 14 and will benefit the Selma Area Food Bank.

Selma residents will have the opportunity next weekend to give back to the community without even leaving home. On Saturday, May 14, area postal carriers will be picking up bags of non-perishable food items for Stamp Out Hunger, the National Association of Letter Carriers (NALC) one-day national food drive.

“A lot of us are fortunate enough to have, and it’s good to give to those who don’t,” said postmaster Chandra Fleming. “Since we serve the community by delivering the mail, we’d also like to give back [to the community.]”

Last year, the nationwide food drive collected nearly 71 million pounds of food that went back to communities by refilling food banks, pantries and shelters, according to NALC.org. Over the years, the annual food drive has been able to help redistribute more than 1.4 billion pounds since 1992.

Fleming said participating in the food drive is easy. Those who are interested in contributing can just leave a bag of non-perishable items in a bag next to their mailbox.

“The carriers pick them up as they deliver the mail,” Fleming said.

Products picked up will be donated to the Selma Area Food Bank. The food bank services Dallas, Perry, Marengo and Wilcox counties.

“It’s a lot of effort on their half because they have to go out and pick the bags up and put them in with the mail and keep that all sorted so they can work,” said food bank executive director Jeff Harrison.

He said the food bank plans on helping the carriers pick up the non-perishable items so they aren’t overwhelmed.

Harrison is thankful for the opportunity to participate in the annual food drive and said it is just in time for the upcoming increase in demand.

“With the summer time coming up and kids being in the house for the summer puts a big demand on a lot of households. [It’s] perfect timing for us to have additional food coming in,” Harrison said.

For more information, call the post office at (334) 874-4678 or the food bank at (334) 872-4111.