FORT LEE, VA. –
Commissary employees and customers are working together again this year to collect donations for the Feds Feed Families campaign. The campaign, which began June 1 and runs through the end of August, collects much-needed items for local food banks. Customers and employees can donate nonperishable food and personal hygiene items to the campaign using marked bins located at the entries or exits of participating commissaries.
"Contributing to the communities that surround our stores is important to the commissaries," said Vicki Archileti, DeCA's executive director of infrastructure support. "Times are still tough for a lot of families, and with commissaries and our patrons working together we hope to lessen that burden."
Last year, commissaries collected almost 740,000 lbs, or 39 percent of the Department of Defense's total of items for local food banks. In 2013, DOD collected more than 1.9 million pounds and donations from the entire federal government totaled 9 million pounds.
Commissaries will again serve as collection points for the campaign. Once the items have been collected the installation will pick up the items and deliver them to a local food bank. Some commissaries also sold prepackaged donations packages, which allowed customers to purchase the bags and then drop them in the collection bins before leaving the store.
The most-needed items for donations include:
· Canned vegetables - low sodium, no salt
· Canned fruits - in light syrup or its own juices
· Canned proteins - tuna, salmon, chicken, peanut butter and beans
· Soups - beef stew, chili, chicken noodle, turkey or rice
· Condiments - tomato-based sauces, light soy sauce, ketchup, mustard, salad dressing or oils
· Snacks - individually packed snacks, crackers, trail mix, dried fruit, granola and cereal bars, pretzels and sandwich crackers
· Multigrain cereal
· 100 percent juice - all sizes, including juice boxes
· Grains - brown and white rice, oatmeal, bulgar, quinoa, couscous, pasta, and macaroni and cheese
· Paper products and household items - paper towels, napkins, cleaning supplies
· Hygiene items - diapers, deodorants (men and women), feminine products, toilet paper, tissues, soap, toothpaste and shampoo
"For the last three years our patrons and employees have never failed to make this campaign a success," said Archileti. "We are looking forward to another great campaign year."