Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Scouting For Food Brings in the Pounds for Bay Area Food Banks

As the numbers roll in, it's apparent that there was a heavy Scout force out and about in the Bay Area last Saturday! A huge thank you to all the Scouts and their assistants for braving the rain and collecting record amounts of food to feed our hungry neighbors. And thank you to everyone who participated and found the drop-off locations, even if they didn't get a door hanger.

Here are the poundage reports thus far:
  • Alameda County Community Food Bank:
  • Food Bank of Contra Costa and Solano:
  • San Francisco Food Bank:
  • Second Harvest Food Bank of Santa Clara and San Mateo Counties:
(These numbers may increase slightly as more donations are weighed next week.)

Thursday, November 18, 2010

40,000 Scouts Hit Bay Area Doorsteps on Saturday

One of the nation’s largest food drives fills food bank shelves for the holidays

One of the nation’s largest food drives takes place Saturday morning (Nov. 20), when Boy Scouts hit doorsteps across the Bay Area – and the nation – to collect non-perishable food for local food banks.

In the Bay Area, more than 40,000 Boy Scouts, Cub Scouts, Venturers, Explorers and their supporters will be “Scouting For Food” by picking up boxed or bagged non-perishable food placed on doorsteps by 9 a.m. on Saturday.

Residential addresses on the Scouts’ collection routes have already received notice by way of a door-hanger promoting the drive. Residents who aren’t on collection routes can still help by bringing donations to Scout drop-off locations between 9 a.m. – 3 p.m. on Saturday. Scout drop-off locations for each county’s food bank are listed at Sonoma County scouts will be participating in a separate food drive to take place in the spring.

“The Scouting for Food drive provides all the food banks with food for the critical demand period during Thanksgiving week,” said Suzan Bateson, executive director of the Alameda County Community Food Bank, which expects about 150,000 pounds of food from residents of that county. In the Bay Area, Scouts are targeting 600,000 pounds.

With the Boy Scouts of America celebrating their 100th anniversary in 2010, the nine Bay Area councils are concluding a year-long effort (which launched with the 2009 drive) to collect “one million cans” of food for Bay Area food banks.

“History has shown that as demand for food in the community rises, so does the outpouring from people who want to help,” said Tim Buchen of the San Francisco Bay Area Council of Boy Scouts of America. “We expect Saturday’s drive to be unprecedented. But even with 40,000 scouts on collection routes, we can’t begin to hit every doorstep. So it’s critical that people help us out by dropping off food at their local drop-off site.”

Whole Foods Market and Safeway locations throughout the Bay Area have in-store barrels to accept donations for Bay Area food banks throughout the holiday season.

Tim Buchen (BOO-ken), San Francisco Bay Area Council – (510) 577-9207 (office); (510) 853-1534

  • Alameda County Community Food Bank
    Brian Higgins (510) 636-4902
  • Food Bank of Contra Costa and Solano
    Lisa Sherrill (925) 408-7655
  • Redwood Empire Food Bank (Sonoma County)
    Lee Bickley (707) 523-7900, ext 15
  • San Francisco Food Bank
    Stacy Newman (415) 282-1900, ext 270
  • Second Harvest Food Bank of Santa Clara and San Mateo Counties
    Poppy Pembroke (408) 266-8866, ext 279

Note to media: Feel free to list any of the Scouting for Food drop-off sites on Saturday (Nov. 20), listed below, in your coverage area (sites are also listed on Site hours differ, but 9 a.m. – 3 p.m. is generally accurate. For coverage purposes, these sites provide great visuals and interviews. All Bay Area Food Banks will be open on Saturday to receive truck shipments from Scouting for Food collections sites.


St. Mary Magdalen School
2005 Berryman Street

Castro Valley

Proctor Elementary School
7520 Redwood Road


Latter Day Saints Church
3551 Decoto Road


Southland Mall
660 West Winton Ave.
(Sears Auto Mall parking lot)


Lucky Store
2000 Portola Blvd.


4501 Rosewood Drive


Alameda County Community Food Bank
7900 Edgewater Drive

Montclair Elementary School
757 Mountain Blvd.
South Parking Lot

Grocery Outlet
2900 Broadway

San Leandro

Boy Scout Office/Leadership Training Center, 1001 Davis St.



Antioch LDS Church
3013 Rio Grande Drive, Antioch

Antioch LDS Stake Center
2350 Jeffery Way, Antioch

Brentwood LDS Church
1101 McClarren Road, Brentwood


Food Bank of Contra Costa and Solano
4010 Nelson Avenue

Farm Bureau Hall
5554 Clayton Road

Oak Grove LDS Church
2930 Treat Boulevard


Danville LDS Stake Center
655 Old Orchard Drive


Hilltop LDS Church
4351 Hilltop Drive


Moraga LDS Church
3776 Via Granada

Pleasant Hill
Pleasant Hill LDS Church
555 Boyd Road

St. Mary Magdalen/ School
2005 Berryman Street, Berkeley


San Francisco
San Francisco Food Bank
900 Pennsylvania Ave.



Home Church
1799 Winchester Boulevard
Suite 100


West Valley Community Services Center
10104 Vista Drive


St Joseph's Family Center
7950 Church Street, Suite A (behind St.Mary's)

San Jose

Second Harvest Food Bank
750 Curtner Avenue

Sacred Heart
1381 South First St

The Lord's Pantry
Behind Gloria Dei Lutheran Church on White Road near Alum Rock Ave


Milpitas Food Pantry
196 S Main Street


Sunnyvale Community Services center
725 Kifer Road


El Granada

Coastside Hope
99 Avenue Alhambra

Los Altos

One North San Antonio Road

Mountain View
El Camino Hospital
2500 Grant Road


American Legion
555 Buel Avenue

Palo Alto

LDS Church
3865 Middlefield Road

South San Francisco

South SF Citadel Corp / Salvation Army



Benicia City Park
Second Street


Food Bank of Contra Costa and Solano
2339 Courage Drive, Suite F


Elks Lodge
2850 Redwood Parkway

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

NBC Bay Area Teams Up With Safeway to Stock Bay Area Food Bank Shelves on Nov. 20

On Saturday, Nov. 20th, NBC Bay Area in partnership with Safeway is hosting a one-day food drive to benefit hungry people throughout the Bay Area. Over 500,000 Bay Area residents require the assistance of their local Bay Area Food Bank every month, and the need is greater than ever.

In light of the bleakest job market since the Great Depression, Bay Area Food Banks are seeing their client bases rapidly expand, absorbing unemployed and underemployed residents to the already staggering number of low-income people who are already struggling to put food on the table.

NBC Bay Area and Bay Area Food Banks have mobilized this one-day food drive at Safeway locations using media to bring the need for food donations to viewers’ attention in their hometown. “We are hoping to raise awareness of the growing need for food assistance in our communities through on-air promotion. With 165 Safeway locations throughout the Bay Area, people are able to donate in their own neighborhood to help their neighbors in need. It is an easy way to receive donations and have a successful drive,” said Lance Lew, NBC Bay Area Community Marketing Director.

Safeway is offering two ways for customers to donate to help feed the hungry during the holiday season: Purchase one or more turkeys, or buy a $10 or $15 bag of groceries. All purchases will be delivered to the local food bank that next week in time for Thanksgiving.

About Bay Area Food Banks:
Bay Area Food Banks is a collaboration of eight local food banks serving northern California counties. Collectively they distributed 135 million pounds of food to adults, seniors and children in need through over 1,500 food pantries, children’s programs, shelters, soup kitchens, residential programs and other emergency food providers. The 2010 holiday season now upon us will be the highest food demand in many years.

  • Alameda County Community Food Bank
    Brian Higgins (510) 636-4902
  • Food Bank of Contra Costa and Solano
    Lisa Sherrill (925) 408-7655
  • Redwood Empire Food Bank (Sonoma County)
    Lee Bickley (707) 523-7900, ext 15
  • San Francisco Food Bank
    Stacy Newman (415) 282-1900, ext 270
  • Second Harvest Food Bank of Santa Clara and San Mateo Counties
    Poppy Pembroke (408) 266-8866, ext 279

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Letter Carriers Food Drive - Saturday May 8, 2010

Bay Area carriers set million-pound goal

A year ago, mired in the depths of a depression that was threatening to reduce their ranks, Bay Area postal carriers defied the economy by dramatically reversing course on their annual food drive. Carriers representing 140 post offices in nine counties collected a record 921,000 pounds of non-perishable food for Bay Area Food Banks, halting a three-year downward trend with a 42 percent increase over the 650,000-pound drive in 2008.

With record unemployment weighing heavy on food banks in Alameda, Contra Costa, Marin, Napa, San Francisco, Santa Clara, San Mateo, Solano and Sonoma counties, regional letter carriers are taking aim at history again with an unprecedented goal: collecting 1 million pounds on the morning of Saturday, May 8 – the date of the 18th Annual National Association of Letter Carriers Stamp Out Hunger Drive.

“Things were so bad for so many people on our routes that we knew we had to circle the wagons,” San Lorenzo postal carrier and Alameda County drive organizer Dennis Stecz said of the 2009 drive, which also set a record (73.4 million pounds) nationally. “We made a concerted effort to leave no can behind. A lot of my customers who donated cans really didn’t have much to spare, but told me they knew there others who were worse off. That motivates us to dig our heels in even deeper in 2010.”

On May 8, some 7,500 Bay Area letter carriers will collect bagged or boxed non-perishable food from postal customers, who need only leave their donations next to their mailbox. The carriers will transport the food back to the post offices, where it will be trucked to the local county food bank. “You don’t have to go any farther than your front door or mailbox to fight hunger,” said Redwood Empire executive director David Goodman, summarizing the logistics. Protein items, including canned fish and meats, are continually in low supply at Bay Area Food Banks.

“I have never seen bad times hurt so many people in my 34 years working here,” said Larry Sly, the executive director of the Food Bank of Contra Costa and Solano, where a recently published study indicated a 46 percent increase in clients over the last four years. “We desperately need the help the letter carriers provide.”

Similar quadrennial studies at each of the five Bay Area Food Banks in the Feeding America network – conducted as part of a national census on hunger – belie any hints of economic recovery.

The Alameda County Community Food Bank is combating swelling hunger among children and teens, which now comprise 43 percent of its clientele. The Redwood Empire Food Bank study revealed an ever-widening gap between the haves and have-nots in Sonoma County, where the median household income of food bank clients is just $930 a month – less than one-fifth of the county as a whole. The San Francisco Food Bank study showed that 150,000 residents of that city now live at or below 150 percent of the Federal Poverty Line – an indication of chronic food insecurity – and that 84 percent of client families with children had lost a job or had pay or hours reduced during the study’s 2009 survey period. At Second Harvest Food Bank of Santa Clara and San Mateo Counties, a program that provides direct distribution to families with dependent children saw enrollment skyrocket 36 percent – to 24,453 families per month – in the last year.

“Summer looms as a scary time for parents whose children participate in school meal programs,” said Alameda County Community Food Bank executive director Suzan Bateson. “The Letter Carriers Drive helps us brace for the surge that begins when that last school bell rings.”

Since its inception in 1983, the largest single-day food drive in the nation has stocked 982.7 million pounds of non-perishable items on food bank shelves from coast to coast, making it a cinch to surpass the 1 billion pound milestone on May 8. One billion pounds of food would feed every resident of California three meals a day for a week.

“The economic downturn has affected so many families – we see it every day on our routes,” said Linda James, a letter carrier who coordinates the drive for her Sonoma County branch. “Being a letter carrier is all about service, but on May 8 we have an opportunity to do so much more for our community.”


Alameda County Community Food Bank
Brian Higgins • (510) 636-4902

Food Bank of Contra Costa and Solano
Lisa Sherrill • (925) 408-7655

Redwood Empire (Sonoma County) Food Bank
Lee Bickley • (707) 523-7900 ext. 15

San Francisco Food Bank
Stacy Newman • (415) 282-1907 ext. 270

Second Harvest Food Bank of Santa Clara and San Mateo Counties
Lynn Crocker • (408) 386-5748

Monday, January 4, 2010

CBS-5 and Whole Foods Market team up for a win with Food For Bay Area Families Drive

Generous CBS 5 viewers, users, and community sponsors sent a new record this year, giving a total of $637,180 to food banks around the Bay Area for the 7th annual "Food for Bay Area Families" drive. Read the full article on

Whole Foods' Jolyn Bibb, CBS5 weather anchor Roberta Gonzales and San Francisco Food Bank executive director Paul Ash display the bounty reaped by Bay Area Food Banks from the Whole Foods Market 5% Day on December 8 - $112,629.20!!