Food and Nutrition Services help feed state's hungry
By Bruce Coleman
When members of the Division of Food and Nutrition Services decided to start a charitable tradition by collecting canned goods to help feed the state's hungry during the holiday season, it seemed like a natural fit.
The drive's organizers had no way of knowing how wildly successful their first campaign would be: more than a ton of canned food items were donated by Medical Center employees last year, enough to provide more than 1,900 meals.
"It was very successful, and we'd like to top that amount this year, if we can," said Deborah Carlisle-Franklin, UMMC food services manager in charge of the second canned food drive. "This (drive) is dear to my heart because poverty is right here where we live."
According to the Mississippi Food Network, the organization that benefits from the drive, more than 20 percent of all Mississippians live below the poverty level. The network distributes donated and purchased food and grocery products through a network of member organizations.
Food services personnel have been accepting canned good donations at drop-off points throughout UMMC since Nov. 29. This year's departmental canned food "weigh-in" event is scheduled from 2:30-3:30 p.m. on Thursday, Dec. 15, in the Panini Café.
Food and nutrition services will provide a cake-and-punch reception for the three departments that donate the most canned goods by weight.
For more information about the drive, call 5-7016 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
Donations of nonperishable canned goods will be accepted through Wednesday, Dec. 14, at food receptacles at the following locations:
- Wiser Bistro,
- Panini Cafe,
- Food court in the Norman C. Nelson Student Union,
- Front lobby of University Hospital, and
- UMMC employee break room at the Jackson Medical Mall Thad Cochran Center.