11 Questions With A Food Drive Expert

Adam Lowy

In honor of this year’s Tackle Hunger Campaign, we wanted to get advice from a pro. Listen to what Grant Winner Adam Lowy had to say about his organization that tackles hunger in a BIG way.

DoSomething.org: Can you tell us about your organization and how you thought of it?

Adam Lowy: Move For Hunger is a non-profit organization that works with moving companies across the country to strengthen the efforts of our communities’ food banks. Our movers offer to pick up the unwanted, non-perishable food items during the moving process and deliver it to their local food banks. My father started doing this on his moves locally about a year ago. When we saw how excited his customers were getting about giving back, we figured we’d try and get some other movers on board.

DS: What is a challenge you typically run into when collecting food?

AL: The biggest challenge for most people holding food drives is getting the food they’ve collected to the food bank.

DS: You've volunteered to register your collection results with Tackle Hunger. Can you tell everyone how to report their collections?

AL: Just go to DoSomething.org/TackleHunger to register your drive.

DS: How much food are you expecting to collect for tackle hunger?

AL: 5,000 pounds.

DS: What are the best ways to get people to hear about the cause? What methods do you use?

AL: Make fliers and send out emails. Facebook groups can also be effective. Also, contact the media… your local newspaper or radio station might be willing to help you get the word out!

DS: What are the most common donations that food banks request?

AL:

  • Canned fish/meat
  • Powdered infant formulas
  • Boxed meals: rice, pasta, potatoes
  • Canned packaged meals: stews, soups, chili
  • Peanut butter: plastic jars only
  • Canned vegetables and fruit
  • Hygiene products: soap, toothpaste, bandages, etc.

DS: What are some products that can't be donated that people often think won't spoil?

AL: Bread actually is one of those items that go stale quickly. Not to say the food banks don’t accept bread, but donations with longer shelf lives are definitely better received.

DS: What are some supplies you should always have when collecting food?

AL: All you need is a collection box and a flyer. Remember with collection boxes that you’re going to have to move these donations when the drive is over… we recommend you put all of your donations in smaller boxes before trying to transport them to a food bank.

DS: What are some ways a person can find a food bank near them?

AL: Feeding America is a great resource for finding food banks in your area. You can visit Feeding America and enter your zip code to find the closest one to you.

DS: What happens when you deliver to food banks?

AL: By setting up food drives, we have a great opportunity to help replenish their empty shelves quickly with large food deliveries. The food banks can then sort these food donations to distribute to the local pantries and families they service throughout the community.

DS: What is one more piece of advice you would give to someone trying to run a food drive?

AL: Get the word out! Fliers, press, and social media are the keys to a successful food drive.

Run a food collection drive. GO