A record 689,589 pounds of food were collected during the 2012 Stamp Out Hunger food drive in Arkansas, for which AARP and AARP Foundation joined the U.S. Postal Service and National Association of Letter Carriers.
See also: Drive to End Hunger
Almost one in five Arkansas households struggles to put enough food on the table and Arkansas is the fifth hungriest state for older adults.
AARP Foundation donated approximately 15 million food collection bags across the country for distribution to households in the states most at risk for senior hunger, including Arkansas, where 784,000 bags were donated. On May 12, letter carriers collected non-perishable food donations from their postal customers at the same time as they deliver the mail.
AARP helped promote Stamp Out Hunger 2012 in Arkansas through AARP Arkansas helped to raise awareness about Stamp Out Hunger through paid print advertising, frequent mentions on social media and promoted the event in the state office’s e-newsletter and May 2012 AARP Bulletin story. Local partners in Stamp Out Hunger included the Arkansas Hunger Relief Alliance, the United Way and the Arkansas Foodbank.
The 689,589 pounds (almost 345 tons) of food collected this year in Arkansas more than doubled the 317,222 pounds collected in 2011. In 2010, 363,166 pounds of food were collected through Stamp Out Hunger.
“We asked Arkansans to help make 2012 the most successful Stamp Out Hunger food drive yet, and they responded beyond our expectations,” said Maria Reynolds-Diaz, AARP Arkansas State Director. “Many hungry Arkansans, especially those who are older, benefited from this tremendous outpouring of generosity.”
Letter carriers delivered collected food donations to local food banks and food pantries. Nationwide, a total of 28.5 million pounds of food were collected during this year’s Stamp Out Hunger drive.