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Letter carriers in Washington County will pick up food Saturday

May 09, 2008|By ANDREW SCHOTZ

WASHINGTON COUNTY -- Senior citizens are relying more on donations for their meals, so this year's postal food drive is particularly important, a local organizer said.

In addition, "the pantries are just completely diminished," said Julie Mitchell, the shop steward of the Hagerstown branch of the National Association of Letter Carriers.

This year's annual food drive will be Saturday.

People should leave donations in bags by the mailboxes where their mail is delivered.

Mitchell said carriers in participating parts of the county will pick up nonperishable food donations as they work their routes.

Ruth Anne Callaham, the executive director of Food Resources, a Washington County nonprofit collection and distribution agency, said she's seen an increase of about 20 percent in the number of senior citizens who ask for food each month.

She said macaroni and cheese is a popular item to donate, but it's high in salt.

"Canned fruits and vegetables are exactly what we need," she said.

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Last year, about 25,000 pounds of food was collected through the drive, which is held in conjunction with the U.S. Postal Service.

Other suggested items for the food drive are canned meats and fish, canned soup, juice, pasta, cereal and rice.

Mitchell said money and food gift cards are welcome, too.

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