Boy Scouts to help restock food bank

March 03, 1995|By Kris Antonelli | Kris Antonelli,Sun Staff Writer

Although the cupboard at the Anne Arundel Food Bank is nearly bare, needy county residents won't go hungry, thanks to the Boy Scouts.

Scouts from Anne Arundel troops expect to collect about 100,000 pounds of nonperishable food from county residents tomorrow and deliver it to the food bank in Deale as part of the annual food drive by the Baltimore Area Council of the Boy Scouts of America.

About 3,000 local Scouts dropped off bags at 120,000 homes throughout the county last week and are returning to pick them up this week, said Kevin LesCallette, district director for the county.

"Last year, we collected more than 100,000 food items, and this year, we expect to collect about 150,000," he said.

The Scouts are to take the bags to drop-off points in the county where National Guard members will put the food in boxes and deliver it to the food bank.

Local radio and television stations have pitched in with advertising for the regional effort.

Scouts in Baltimore and its suburbs also will be collecting food for the hungry.

"We chose this time of year because there tends to be a shortage after Thanksgiving and the other holidays," Mr. LesCallette said.

The Anne Arundel Food Bank has had an unusually difficult year, said food bank director Bruce Michalec.

"Although there were plenty of food drives going on during the holiday season, we think the unusually warm weather caused people to not think as much about the hungry," he said. "So we ran into a shortfall and have not caught up yet."

The holiday food drives that begin in September and end in December usually generate about 100,000 pounds of food. Last year, they collected 50,000 pounds, Mr. Michalec said. That food is supposed to last until the Boy Scout and Postal Service drives in March. This year it has not, and he must use $15,000 in federal funds to close the gap, he said.

In addition, the Girl Scouts have started a food drive in state office buildings that is expected to help, he said. In past years, the postal workers have collected about 70,000 pounds of food. The food from the drives is expected to last until the September drives begin, Mr. Michalec said.

"It seems like more and more people need food," he said. "While the recession is supposed to be over, we haven't seen that here."

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