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Local letter carriers to collect food donations Saturday, May 14

Grand Cities residents are asked to leave bags of food items near their mailboxes for distribution to local food banks

Salvation Army
The Salvation Army will be among the five local food banks that will benefit from the food drive conducted by letter carriers Saturday, May 14 in the Grand Cities.
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GRAND FORKS – Grand Forks and East Grand Forks letter carriers will be collecting donations for their 30th annual food drive on Saturday, May 14.

As members of the National Association of Letter Carriers Local Branch 517, they are joining the nationwide food drive, which is conducted in about 10,000 communities, said Ralph Honda, a retired letter carrier who’s leading this year’s local effort.

Bags of food donations can be left near residents' mailboxes for letter carriers to pick up on their regular routes, Honda said.

The food will be distributed to five local food banks – the Salvation Army, St. Joseph’s Social Care, Hope Church and Red River Valley Community Action in Grand Forks and the East Grand Forks food bank.

The national food drive, now in its 31st year, “is the biggest one-day food drive in the world,” said Honda. “The first year was a pilot program; the next year it took off.”

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Throughout the U.S., “billions and billions of pounds of food are collected,” he said.

Any food donations that aren’t picked up Saturday, will be picked up on Monday and Tuesday, May 16 and 17, he said.

Instead of a food donation, “some people want to give money,” Honda said. Small amounts can be designated for a particular food bank. For large donations, checks should be made out to NALC Branch 517.

“Anything would be appreciated,” he said.

This is the 29th annual Letter Carriers Food Drive that he has led, said Honda, who worked as a letter carrier for 39 years. He expects more than 60 letter carriers and volunteers will be involved in this year’s drive.

Honda will be assisted by Hannah Robzengo, a local letter carrier, he said. They are asking the public “to give what you can, and we hope we have a successful drive.”

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Pamela Knudson is a features and arts/entertainment writer for the Grand Forks Herald.

She has worked for the Herald since 2011 and has covered a wide variety of topics, including the latest performances in the region and health topics.

Pamela can be reached at pknudson@gfherald.com or (701) 780-1107.
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