Help local families in need, 'Stamp Out Hunger' on Saturday

Stamp Out Hunger takes place Saturday, May 13. Fill up a sturdy bag with nonperishable items, and place it in or near your mailbox for your mail carrier to pick up. The food will be distributed to needy families in Western Washington, thanks to Food Lifeline. (KOMO PHOTO)

SEATTLE -- When your letter carrier drops off your mail on Saturday, they will be looking for a blue plastic bag to pick up as well.

Food Lifeline is holding their annual "Stamp Out Hunger" campaign, asking for food like rice, canned tuna, and baby formula for local families in need.

Blue plastic bags have been distributed around the Sound, and should be filled with nonperishable items for your mail carrier to pick up Saturday morning.

KOMO News consumer reporter Connie Thompson visited Food Lifeline on Thursday, and was shown how a simple bag of food can keep neighbors from going hungry.

The food collected on Saturday not only helps local families fight off hunger, it keeps tons of good food from going to waste.

"We create relationships with farmers, manufacturers, and restaurants and say look, give us the opportunity to rescue this food, before you dispose of it," Mark Coleman with Food Lifeline said.

Their warehouse in South Park is sorted and stocked with food that is then distributed to local food banks.

Between rescued fresh food, donated nonperishables, and monetary contributions, Food Lifeline helps local food banks provide balanced meals to an estimated one-in-five children, and one-in-seven adults across Western Washington.

"The majority of people that come to our food banks are having an emergency," Coleman said. "This isn't a life situation. 80-to-90 percent of our clients are in some kind of a crisis."

Donations like a jar of peanut butter, or package of pasta placed in a bag on Saturday helps complete Food Lifeline's mission to "waste not" so that local families will "want not" when they need a meal.

Interested in donating? Check pantries, or stop by the store and pickup nonperishable food. The food doesn't have to be in a blue bag to be picked up, any sturdy bag will do.

Have the food ready to go near or in your mailbox Saturday morning, and help stamp out hunger in Western Washington.

For more information, visit Food Lifeline "Stamp Out Hunger" web page online.

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