Organizers call for upping Feds Feed Families goal
By Eddy Ball
The 2012 Feds Feed Families (FFF) campaign at NIEHS opened June 27, with a challenge from NIEHS/NTP Director Linda Birnbaum, Ph.D., to “Beat Your Best.” The drive is collecting non-perishable food and hygiene items, with the most wanted items including canned fruits, canned vegetables, multigrain cereal, grains, canned proteins, soups, 100 percent juice, condiments, snacks, baking goods, hygiene items, and paper products and household items.
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“Last year, NIEHS employees generously donated more than 3,500 pounds,” Birnbaum wrote in an all-hands email message. “Given that the HHS goal is five pounds per person [this year], let’s see if NIEHS can do even more.” The first curbside collection of a record-setting 2,000 pounds was made July 25, and the second and final pickup will be Aug. 29 on the main campus and at Keystone. Drop boxes are also located throughout the buildings, for donations in between.
As it was last year, the Institute’s drive is organized and sponsored by NIEHS management, the American Federation of Government Employees (AFGE) 2923, and Blacks In Government (BIG), with the goal of collecting food and other items for delivery in July to the Durham Rescue Mission and in August to the Food Bank of Central and Eastern North Carolina.
Part of a national effort to fill food bank pantries
Nationally, this year marks the fourth annual Feds Feed Families drive, a federal government-wide effort organized by the U.S. Office of Personnel Management (OPM). The campaign has continued to grow each year since 2009 and, last year, the Capital Area Food Bank in Washington, D.C., received over 500,000 pounds of needed food.
At the kickoff event in June, OPM Director John Berry said organizers decided against setting a specific goal. Instead, the 2012 campaign challenged Capitol area federal employees to see for themselves by how much they could exceed last year’s record collection.
Becoming a part of FFF is as easy as an email or phone call to the organizers — AFGE coordinator Bill Jirles at 919-541-2637, BIG coordinator Annette Rice at 919-541-4410, or NIEHS management coordinator Monya Wells at 919-541-1952.
Interested employees can also contact volunteers in their respective divisions and offices across NIEHS. If the level of donations is as great as organizers anticipate, FFF will need even more volunteers this year to handle drop box collections and the final curbside collection Aug. 29.
Most needed items for 2012 Feds Feed Families
FFF cannot accept any glass containers. The following kinds of items may be donated in paper, plastic, metal, or cloth containers, making sure products are well within their expiration dates:
- Canned meals, seafood, and meats
- Canned fruits and vegetables
- Peanut butter
- 100 percent juice
- Rice, pasta, and dried beans
- Infant products
- Hygiene items
During the drive, which runs from June 27 through Aug. 29, donations can be made at any of the drop boxes on campus.
- B module – 1st floor elevator near the cafeteria
- B module – 1st floor elevator near the front desk
- C module – 1st floor next to the newspaper machine
- C module – 1st floor elevator near the loading dock
- D module – 1st floor near the loading dock
- E module – 1st floor near the loading dock
- F module – Near the ping pong table
- F module – Near the peach tree
- Lobby area
- Break room S152
- 1st floor near elevator
- 2nd floor near elevator
- 3rd floor near elevator