What’s ‘Portable Food’ and Why is a Plan Underway to Collect It?
If you've never heard of "portable food" before you're not alone. However, it's so important to some people that there's a plan in the Hudson Valley to collect as much as possible.
Local residents are more than familiar with food drives. Whether it's asking for non-perishable food items during Thanksgiving or campaigns to keep the Hudson Valley food pantries stocked during the summer months, the outpouring of support to those in need of food is always heartwarming to see. Now, there's a new food drive taking place that is asking for donations of a very specific type of food that many people may never even think about.
On May 9 there will be a Portable Food Drive happening at Marist College in Poughkeepsie between 10am and 3pm. Local residents are asked to stop by the campus to donate specific types of food for a very special purpose.
The food drive is being hosted by Marist professor and local veteran advocate "Commander Tom" Zurhellen. According to Zurhellen, portable food is very important to our homeless veterans and something that many food banks don't have enough of.
During his weekly Veteran Report on the Boris & Robyn Show on 101.5 WPDH, Zurhellen explained that our homeless population and those living in shelters don't have easy access to refrigeration or cooking appliances. For these individuals, getting a box of macaroni and cheese can be frustrating, as there may not be an easy way for them to prepare it.
That's where portable food comes in. Zurhellen says that nutritional items that don't require cooking are vital to many of the people who will be visiting the new food pantry through The Dutchess County Veterans One Stop. Commander Tom says he'd like to make sure all of the veterans that come by looking for food can walk away with something they can actually use.
Items that are being requested include energy bars, granola bars, peanut butter crackers, nuts, trail mix, boxes of cereal and cereal bars. These items can easily be stored and eaten by anyone, regardless of their living situation.
If you'd like to participate, you can visit the "Fill Tommy's Truck for Veterans" event at Marist College on Route 9 in Poughkeepsie on Tuesday, May 9 from 10am to 3pm. The truck will be set up in the Donnelly parking lot, which is directly adjacent to the football stadium at the south gate.
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