When mail carriers on Saturday deliver the mail on foot, their bags are expected to get heavier as they go along their route.
The 23rd annual National Association of Letter Carriers’ Stamp Out Hunger Food Drive is scheduled for Saturday.
Postal carriers are asking residents to leave nonperishable food donations, such as canned soup, canned vegetables, canned meats and fish, pasta, peanut butter, rice or cereal in a bag by their mailboxes by 9 a.m. Saturday for a letter carrier to pick up.
Food collected by letter carriers will then be donated to local food pantries, said Brian Kettler, who is the food drive coordinator for Belleville.
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Last year the Belleville mail carriers collected about 34,000 pounds of food. Carriers in other Metro East communities collected a total of about 68,000 pounds of food.
Kettler said if people forget to leave food to donate on Saturday, mail carriers can still pick up donations on Monday and Tuesday of next week.
He added mail carriers want to show they are part of the community.
“I think it’s important for people to help the community to give back,” Kettler said.