Ruritans, AARP partner for food drive

Published 6:56 pm Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Suffolk’s Ruritan clubs are joining with the AARP and other Ruritan clubs from around the state this weekend for a Community Food Drive aimed at helping to replenish food banks across Virginia.

“Ruritan is very excited to be partnering with AARP on this project and pleased that we have nearly 70 clubs in Virginia committed to offering their clubhouses or meeting places as collection points for the food drive,” Ruritan Executive Director Michael T. Chrisley stated in an announcement about the drive.

“The Ruritan motto of ‘fellowship, goodwill and community service’ provides a perfect framework for this partnership, allowing both organizations to collaborate on issues that are important to all of our members. Efforts like last year’s Project Energy Save helped hundreds of elderly people winterize their homes. This year, we will work together to feed hungry people.

Area residents are being asked to help with the effort by filling a bag with non-perishable food and delivering it to one of the drop-off locations.

In Suffolk, the Possum Hollow Ruritan Club, located at 424 Market St., Suite 200, will collect food donations from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. on Friday.

Other area Ruritan clubs will follow with their own collection drives on Saturday. Collections will take place from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Cypress Ruritan Club, located at the corner of Cypress Chapel and White Marsh roads; from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Holland Ruritan Club, 6519 Holland Road; and from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the Magnolia Ruritan Club, 1029 Nansemond Parkway.

Isle of Wight’s Ruritans also are participating. Collection drives will be held from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Carrollton Ruritan Club, 14138 Norsworthy Drive; from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Carrsville Ruritan Club, 5336 Carrsville Highway; from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the Smithfield Ruritan Club, 346 Main St.; and from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the Zuni Ruritan Club, 20221 Ruritan Drive, Zuni.

Among the food items that the food banks need most are peanut butter, chunky soups, canned meats, canned tuna, canned vegetables, crackers, hot and cold cereal, pasta, rice and canned fruit. Avoid items in glass containers.

“One person really can make a difference,” AARP Virginia State Director Bill Kallio stated in the announcement. “AARP is calling upon our one million members in Virgini9a to help replenish emergency food banks across the commonwealth. Virginia food banks provide valuable assistance to people in need right in your community.”

Other food drives are also being this time of year:

The annual Girl Scouts Helping Hands Food Drive. Girl Scouts and volunteers will collect non-perishable food items to support local food banks. Fill a bag with non-perishable food items (no glass please) and place them on your doorstep by 9 a.m. on Oct. 24. Girl Scouts will collect donations between 9 a.m. and noon. If your home is missed, you can take your bagged donation to any Farm Fresh Food and Pharmacy in Hampton Roads throughout the month of October. All donations will be sent to the Foodbank of Southeastern Virginia and the Foodbank of the Virginia Peninsula. If you’d like to volunteer or for more information about the Helping Hands Food Drive, visit our Web site at www.gsccc.org.

The Youth/Educational Department of Poplar Run Baptist Church is holding a food drive through Nov. 15. Each person who donates a food item gets a raffle ticket for a chance to win a free turkey. The drawing will be held on Nov. 22 during the Poplar Run church service.