It is arguably the largest food drive that benefits the Bountiful Community Food Pantry and the Family Connection Food Bank.
Scouts will be dropping off bags for residents to fill with donations in coming days. Those bags will be picked up the morning of March 24.
The FCC Food Bank also will be accepting donations at the Davis County Memorial Courthouse in downtown Farmington and Winegar’s in Clearfield.
“While all food items are of help, most needed items include canned meat, sugar, cooking oil, pancake and syrup, condiments, canned tomato items, peanut butter and canned beans,” said Lorna Koci, BCFP director.
The food pantry will also accept food that has expired.
Through these donations, both pantries can continue providing food assistance to those in need. Many clients work but are unable to make ends meet when they experience sudden medical bills or home repair expenses, Koci said.
Some clients live on fixed incomes and can use food assistance to stretch their dollars as needed. Others have found themselves suddenly out of work and are trying to stay afloat while seeking new employment, she said.
“This is probably one of the largest ways to help us get through the summer,” said FCC Food Bank Director Gene Lopez.
Traditionally, the summer months tend to draw fewer donations.
Although numbers of those being served are not as high as one or two years ago, Lopez said “we are seeing a lot of new families.”
Numbers at the FCC facility average 700 to 800 households a month, or upwards of 2,500 people.
“Food insecurity is really high in Utah,” he said.
That’s the term used for the possibility a household may not have enough food on a regular basis. In that regard, Utah recently ranked in the top five nationally of such states.
Both food pantries work to get clients off of a need for regular food assistance by trying to help them find jobs or job training, and gain access to other resources.
“This is not just a Band-Aid,” Lopez said. “Our end goal is to get people into employment.”
FCC Development Director Daneen Adams recalled the case of a mother who was working two, minimum wage, part-time jobs. Through training and as an electrician and with other prior support, she now is earning between $60,000 and $70,000 a year.
“We don’t just give them things (food),” she said. “We ask clients what they did with that $70 they saved by not having to buy food,” for example.