Holiday Food Drive Helps Local Food Pantries

pictureBIG RAPIDS – Do you have canned food just sitting in your cabinets? Put those cans to good use by donating them to the Student Government Association’s second annual Holiday Food Drive.

The food drive runs through Dec. 8 and is organized as a way for students to help less fortunate community members during the holiday season, said Liz Cottrell, a sophomore from Commerce Township studying Business Administration who is chair of the food drive along with being Delta Zeta Sorority’s SGA representative.

Cottrell added the food drive also gives more than 210 registered student organizations the opportunity to demonstrate their competitiveness. Student Government members will count and weigh each RSO’s donations, she said. The top three winners are determined by the pounds of cans divided by the number of members in the RSO. First place winners receive $250 cash, second place receives a $100 catering coupon and third place receives a Domino’s pizza party.

“It’s good to help our community. It’s been a rough year economically, and many organizations are helping out the community the best way they know how,” said Amber Balmer, Student Government president and a senior public relations major from Columbia, Mo.

Residence Halls are participating in their own competition. The prize for the top donating hall is $200 cash, Balmer added.

She also said 36 student organizations are participating this year, which is 10 more organizations than 2007. Also, the 2008 goal of 3,500 pounds of cans collected increased by 1,000 pounds from 2007.

The founder of the Student Government Holiday Food Drive, Robbie Rankey, a senior in Business Administration and Pre-Law from Bay City who is currently the Student Government Diversity chair, said between 2,500 and 3,000 pounds of canned food was collected in 2007.

The cans are donated to food banks throughout West Michigan, but as close to Big Rapids as possible, Balmer said. Throughout the competition, if organizations do not have a place to store their canned goods, they can bring them to the Student Government Office.

Drop off boxes for canned goods are located in the Student Government office and residence hall lobbies.

21 November, 2008