Since 1995, letter carriers in Butler County have collected about 1.3 million pounds of food for area food banks and other services that help the needy. Here are some of the foods gathered last year in the Dayton area as part of the nationwide program. ADAM MARSHALL / STAFF
Photo: Michael Rutledge
Photo: Michael Rutledge

How to help Butler County postal employees battle hunger on Saturday

The National Association of Letter Carriers’ food drive in 2018 collected 28,395 pounds of food in Butler County and almost 1.3 million pounds since 1995, serving thousands of families through the Shared Harvest food banks’ network of food pantries.

Those who give food can even help set a world record, if this year’s drive nationally eclipses last year’s, which made the record books.

Many volunteers will help with the food drive.

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Cities like Hamilton and Fairfield declared the day to be National Association of Letter Carriers Food Drive Day.

“On behalf of all municipal officials and our administration, we do request all citizens of our community to support the efforts of this national drive by placing non-perishable foods next to their mailbox on the morning of May 11, to help meet the needs of our neighbors locally,” Hamilton Council Member Tim Naab said Wednesday, reading a proclamation about the event.

“Last year we did get entered into the Guinness Book of World Records for 82 million pounds collected nationally in one day,” Eric Yost of the letter carriers told Hamilton City Council. “But that’s not enough, obviously.”

“It’s cool to have records, it’s cool to say we have those things, but it’s not enough, we need more, and we’ve made it easy for you,” Yost said. “On the 11th, you just put out non-perishable items by your mailbox … and we collect it.”

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Last year’s local collection was “a little bit light,” with the 28,395 pounds, which was below the annual average of about 60,000 pounds, Yost said.

He blamed the rain, which may have kept some people from putting out their cans.

“So we’re really hoping to push the drive,” he said, noting everything collected locally feeds local people.