Students pitch in to help fill food bank shelves

Friday, October 24, 2008 6:33 AM EDT
By Rachael Scarborough King, Register Staff

NORTH BRANFORD — Dozens of students will fan out across town Saturday morning to help restock shelves at local food banks.

The district is holding its 19th annual Community Round Up, a food drive to benefit two charities in the Northford and North Branford sections of town. About 100 middle school students, as well as some high school students, are expected to participate.

North Branford Intermediate School Principal Alan Davis said some residents put boxes of nonperishable food items outside their homes for students to pick up, but volunteers also knock on doors to encourage people to donate.

The event typically garners 7,000 to 10,000 food items, Davis said.

“They’ll go to the houses in their territory, and in many cases they’ll go up to the doors and knock on the doors in groups and ask if people will be willing to donate,” he said. “We will accept cash donations, but primarily we’re looking for those food items.”

The students are scheduled to meet at Totoket Valley Elementary School Saturday morning, where they will form teams of two to five people and receive their designated routes. Each team has an adult who drives them along the route.

The teams have about two hours to collect the items, after which they return to the school for counting. The team that collects the most items receives gift certificates to local businesses.

Elementary school students don’t participate in the Round Up Saturday, but they have been collecting personal hygiene items that also are donated to the food banks.

Davis said the charities have been low on supplies lately and are in need of donations.

“The major support for the food banks comes from this effort, and their shelves have been dramatically depleted, so we’re looking to restock those shelves this year,” he said.

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