The Ottumwa Courier

Wapello County

October 31, 2012

Food banks find themselves in need

(Continued)

OTTUMWA — Charity and grocery store team up

The empty shelves at the food bank have prompted organizers to try something new.

“In the past, we had the food, so we didn’t need to have a fall fundraiser,” said Maureen Myshock, an AmeriCorps-VISTA volunteer helping at the Food Bank of Southern Iowa. “Corporate donations are down. In federal commodities, we’re down 20,000 pounds. We don’t have the food available to provide going into the winter, which is not a good scenario.”

They’re working with Hy-Vee to bring in both food and funding for food. Myshock said the plan is pretty simple: “Take a Scan for the Holiday card up to a Hy-Vee store cashier, state the amount of money you would like to donate; this donated amount will be added to your grocery bill.”

She said for those who are uncomfortable giving money, the other option at Hy-Vee is to pick up a prepackaged bag of food to be added to your grocery bill then, then set aside for the food bank.

The fall “Scan for the Holidays” fundraiser will run from Nov. 2 through the day of Thanksgiving.

And because they’re expecting a positive response, Myshock said, organizations with civic-minded volunteers available should contact her about scheduling some hours helping with various tasks.

“The food bank doesn’t have enough staff to [keep up with] three Hy-Vees in Ottumwa,” as well as Hy-Vee stores in Albia, Centerville and Fairfield.

And though the Oskaloosa store won’t collect food, they will have the scan cards, which can be brought to the register and marked with a donation.  

For more information and other ways to donate, call the Food Bank of Southern Iowa at 641-682-3403.

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