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Scouts help collect food items for the needy

Friday, December 20th, 2013
Issue 51, Volume 17.
Bevi Edlund
Staff Writer
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The month of December seems to be time to give, especially to those in need.

Over 14,000 pounds of food items have been collected by local Boy Scouts, Cub Scouts and Venture Crew members, which beat last yearís numbers.

Although their drives are focused during the holidays, the need is year round, said Greg Rasmussen, BSA Tahquitz district food drive chair.

The Scouts did their first official food drive drop-off on Saturday, Nov. 16 to the Salvation Army Church. There are about 100 families that the Salvation Army Church helps out.

Even though Nov. 16 was the Scoutsí only official drop-off, the church accepts donations throughout December.

The local Scouts, from around Southwest Riverside County, had drop-off points throughout the Valley including HOPE in Lake Elsinore and the Temecula Community Food Pantry.

Historically, the food would be distributed to the "Salvation Army Scouting for Food" food drive, but some Scout units prefer to take their food to the pantry of their choice, said Rasmussen.

"Scouts have been doing the food drives as long as I can remember, as the scouting program is very active in teaching community service," Rasmussen said.

Last year the Scouts collected over 10,000 pounds of food that went to local food pantries.

"Some of our units set up at grocery stores to ask shoppers to donate food items," he said, which some troops did this year, visiting the Albertsonís on Temecula Parkway in Temecula on Nov. 9.

They passed out flyers and encouraged shoppers to purchase extra food for families in need. Rasmussen added that some boys collect food from their neighbors by going door-to-door.

For those who are interested in helping, Rasmussen said people are always welcome to volunteer at a food pantry in their area. Food donations are accepted by most food pantries year round. A Scout troop is associated to each food pantry that is connected through their corresponding church and is always willing to collect food year round.



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