According to a study conducted by feeding America in 2010, In Suffolk County alone, 135,200 people are food insecure. In New York State alone, 2,757,270 people are food insecure. A growing 5.7 million people every week receive emergency food assistance in the United States. These statistics make it evident that funding food banks and food assistance programs should be on everyone's minds - the people who utilize them are our friends and neighbors, and hunger is something that is happening in our own backyard.
In light of this growing issue, Long Island Cares, Long Island’s first foodbank has come together with Walmart of South Setauket to reach out to the Long Island community in an attempt to generate more donations and food supplies, and to spread awareness on the problem of hunger and homelessness - issues that strike closer to home than many Long Islanders realize. The program, named ‘Stuff-A-Truck’ motivates and educates community members on the serious issue of hunger. In its work with Walmart, Long Island Cares has stationed a truck outside the entrance of South Setauket Walmart, to collect donations from shoppers.
On special days throughout 2012 (see below), from 11AM to 7PM, shoppers can carry on their usual shopping routine, but also shop for the less fortunate and contribute to LI Cares Food Drive to place any amount of groceries in the donation bins. Pat Molloy, a volunteer manning the donations table states: “Our goal is to gather up some food for LI Cares and to work for the problem of feeding people on Long Island--especially the children.” Molloy has been working with LI Cares for six months and is coming to the rescue of locals who are experiencing the hardship of the tough economy, and would not have enough to eat without the provisions collected and distributed by LI Cares.
LI Cares was founded in 1980 by late singer, Harry Chapin and has been aiding the homeless ever since. The organization has two locations in Hauppauge and in Freeport. From the ‘Stuff-A-Truck’ program in Setauket, to the food drive at the Great South Bay Music Festival, one aspect is clear: “Hunger is closer to home than you think”. Any prospective volunteers who wish to aid in the fight against hunger with the ‘stuff-a-truck’ program can contact Alisha Summers at (631) 582-FOOD or at firstname.lastname@example.org.
To cotribute to the Stuff-A-Truck Donation Drive, stop by Walmart on 3990 Nesconset Highway in South Setauket from 11AM to 7PM on:
Tuesday, July 31
Wednesday, August 1
Wednesday, September 5
Monday, October 1
Thursday, November 1
Monday, December 3