In 2016, the Center of Hope served over 4,400 households in the Ravenna and surrounding areas, providing 25,000 bags of groceries and serving 35,000 hot meals. Nearly 1,100 of those households came from the 44266 zip code.
The need is not diminishing, especially given the rising costs of groceries, said Anne Marie Noble, the director of Emergency Outreach Services at the Center of Hope.
“The need continues to grow and with school just about over, families will be coming to the Center of Hope as children will not be getting free reduced meals at school,” Noble said.
That’s why on May 13, the National Association of Letter Carriers will collect food donations in order to provide assistance to the millions of Americans who are struggling with hunger during the 25th anniversary campaign on Stamp Out Hunger.
That Saturday, Ravenna letter carriers will be picking up non-perishable food items to be donated to the Center of Hope. Items most needed are: peanut butter, jelly, cereal, canned vegetables, canned fruits, meals in a can, tuna, pasta, spaghetti sauce, instant potatoes, pork and beans, Manwich, Macaroni and Cheese, Ramen Noodles, and canned soups. No expired food will be accepted.
The Stamp Out Hunger food drive is the nation’s largest single-day food drive, having collected more than one billion pounds of food since its inception as a national food drive in 1993.
The nation’s 180,000 letter carriers will collect food donations left at the mailboxes of Americans in more than 10,000 communities and deliver them to food banks and other hunger-relief organizations.
Nutritionally inadequate diets are a concern, and particularly locally, according to the Center of Hope. The health costs on all residents are impacted by the inadequately fed elderly who become vulnerable to falls and illnesses, the shelter claims. And the opposite end of the spectrum is also true: 1 in 4 children are food insecure in the county.