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Giving Tree seeks donations to combat hunger

By Lisa Crockett

The Giving Tree: Douglas County United Against Hunger, is gearing up for its third annual food drive on March 12 from 9 a.m. until 2 p.m. to support the Food Bank at the Douglas/Elbert Task Force.

Alumni of Leadership Douglas County in Lone Tree started the organization three years ago in response to the economic downturn and its impact on the community. This year the drive is expanding to include Castle Pines, with a donation collection station at the Castle Pines Library in the Village Square Shopping Center. Cans may also be dropped off at the Castle Pines Chamber of Commerce.

“We would love to have volunteers help in one-hour shifts at the drive, which will be held in the parking lot of the Castle Pines Library,” said Carla Kenny, vice president of the Castle Pines Chamber of Commerce. The event is being sponsored by the chamber as well as American Furniture Warehouse and Leadership Douglas County alumni.

This effort is the largest one-day food drive in Douglas County, last year collecting more than 30,000 pounds of food. Distributions of food and toiletries from the task force increased 10 percent in 2010, after seeing a 30 percent increase in 2009. Last year they distributed $577,434 in food, hygiene and household supplies to over 14,000 people in Douglas County communities. More than half of those who received supplies and services were children.

“This time of year the food banks are low. Everybody jumps to help during the holidays and then there is a slump in donations,” said Kenny. “There are so many needy families here in Douglas County, and this effort was very successful in Lone Tree last year and we want to help as well.”

The Food Bank especially needs tuna, peanut butter, canned meat, beans, rice, soups, Hamburger Helper, school snacks, and canned fruit. Giving Tree Founder Susan Squyer adds, “Cash is king. The DC Task Force has buying power at places like Food Bank of the Rockies that enables them to purchase 23 pounds of food for just five dollars.”

If you are interested in volunteering at the food drive or making a donation, contact Kenny at 303-688-3359.



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