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Metro Food Drive for Second Harvest Raises Enough to Provide More Than 101,000 Meals

11/26/2013

Over 122,000 Pounds of Food Collected

Second Harvest Food Bank logoNASHVILLE, Tenn. – More than 122,000 pounds of food was raised for Second Harvest Food Bank during the fifth annual Metro Government-wide food drive led by Mayor Karl Dean. For the fourth year, Mayor Dean challenged the Governor’s Office to a friendly “food fight,” and this year the trophy stayed with the Mayor’s Office.

During a news conference at Second Harvest today, Mayor Dean was joined by Gov. Bill Haslam and announced the amount of food raised was enough to provide 101,721 meals for Davidson County families. Mayor Dean also recognized three Metro Government departments for winning the “Mayor’s Cup.” The winner in the general competition among Metro departments was the Metro Arts Commission, which raised 355 pounds of food per person.

In the public safety contest between the Fire Department and Police Department, the Fire Department won by raising a total of 9,518 pounds of food. In the public participation contest between Parks and Recreation, the Nashville Farmers’ Market and the Metro Transit Authority, MTA won after donating 25,146 pounds of food. MTA waged a “Stuff the Bus” campaign to get public bus riders to donate canned goods in exchange for free bus tickets.

“Metro employees and community contributors continue to be generous, and I could not be more proud of everyone who participated,” Mayor Dean said. “I also can’t thank Gov. Haslam and his staff enough for their enthusiastic participation in our friendly competition. Through the Metro food drive and with the help of Second Harvest, we are able to support struggling Tennesseans and bring city-wide attention to the issue of hunger. Together, we are helping a lot of families this holiday season.”

The donated food items will be sorted by Second Harvest this week before going out to a variety of food pantries and community centers providing emergency food assistance in Nashville.

“I am thankful for Second Harvest Food Bank and organizations like them because they play an important role in helping families across Tennessee, and I want to encourage citizens throughout the Volunteer State to do what you can this year to help those households who may be food insecure,” Gov. Haslam said.

This is the fifth year Metro departments have collected food to help stock the shelves at Second Harvest in advance of the upcoming holiday season. Cans and monetary donations were collected from Nov. 6 to Nov. 22.

The Mayor’s Office donated 385 pounds per person of food to win the “food fight.” The Mayor’s Office has won twice before, and the Governor’s Office won in 2011.

“Hunger doesn't care about circumstance – we all know people who are struggling in our community,” said Jaynee Day, president and CEO of Second Harvest Food Bank of Middle Tennessee. “The continued support from our local and state government will help stock pantries across Middle Tennessee this holiday season, and for that we are eternally grateful.”

The demand for food assistance has steadily increased since 2008, requiring Second Harvest to distribute more food to more people in more place more often – and they need your help. The most-needed items include peanut butter, canned meat, canned fruit and vegetables, soups and stews, pasta and cereal.

Currently, more than 1 million Tennesseans find themselves in dire need of food. One in six adults and one in four children struggle with hunger daily in Tennessee, according to Second Harvest. For more information about Second Harvest Food Bank, visit www.secondharvestmidtn.org or call 615-329-3491.

The Metro Food Fight is supported by Impact Nashville, a Mayor’s Office initiative to increase volunteerism to address the city’s most pressing needs.

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