Friday, May 25, 2018

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Annual end of quarter food collection has begun

As students are packing up their residence hall room or apartment in anticipation for the upcoming winter break, they may notice a few extra packages of Ramen or a sweater that just does not fit anymore. Why not get in the holiday spirit early this year by donating to those in need?

The annual end of the quarter food collection begins this week both on and off campus.

This collection is not just for leftover canned goods or old clothes.

“If it is still good, whatever it is, we will find a home for it,” said Ed Newman, recycling and refuse manager. “It just isn’t right for people to just throw things away in times like these. Athens has the highest poverty rating in the state, so it behooves us to help.”

For those living in the residence halls, there will be collection sites in each of the 42 buildings' lobbies.

At the end of the quarter, students are usually left with extra Bobcat Cash and Flex Points. By Students can use that leftover money to purchase non-perishable food items at the market and donate them.  

In past years, there have been off-campus collection sites on  front porches on busy avenues like Mill St. and Palmer St. However, this method did not meet expected results.

This year, Ohio University will be trying a new system for off-campus collection. Representatives will be going door to door on various streets and multi-unit housing complexes to make arrangements with people on when the collection will take place.

“There are 13,000 people that live off campus. That is so many people who could be donating,” said Newman.

If this new process for off campus collection is successful then they will continue on with it for future collections.

Once all the food had been collected, it is sorted and distributed to those in need by the Athens County Fair Board.

In the past, the amount of food collected has totaled near 1,500 pounds. Each year this number fluctuates, but Newman hopes to double the donations from the previous year.

“[Donating] is a more efficient use of resources,” said Newman. “It is the moral and ethical thing to do, the responsible thing to do, and it is the right thing to do.”