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Scouting For Food helps southeast Idaho families

The Aberdeen Times of Aberdeen, Idaho

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Bing-Pow and the Grand Teton Council of the Boy Scouts of America are kicking off their annual "Scouting for Food".

Scouts will go door-to-door on Saturday, Oct. 24, collecting the canned goods and non-perishables that citizens have hung on their doors for donation to local food banks to help feed the area's hungry. Food collection will start at 9 a.m., so filled bags should be hung for donation by then. Residents are asked to use any bag they already have. Bags will be recycled after the food collection.

Cub Scouts and Boy Scouts will join together with their leaders and parents to walk or drive around the communities in Springfield, Aberdeen and American Falls.

The canned food collected will be presented to the local food banks at the Springfield Fire Station, Aberdeen Food Bank and SEICAA in American Falls to be handed out to community members needing help.

Scouting For Food involves several hundred young men (Scouts) in every community. In Southeast Idaho, Scouting For Food is one of the yearly service projects that every unit plans on performing for the good of the community.

Scouts are asked to "knock on the door" of those homes they left the empty bags on the previous week before, if they find no food on the doorstep.

Through the Scouting for Food drive young Scouts see that they are part of bigger picture and that they can have an impact. Some troops help the community food agency stock the shelves as the food comes in. Some see the people waiting for the food as they do additional service on the non-Scouting For Food day. These young men help to organize the routes, coordinating the pick-up day and the sorting of the food for the participating agency.

The need is greater than ever before.

"With an increase of disadvantaged and homeless people in our area this year, we definitely need some help feeding those less fortunate than ourselves," said Brian Porter, public relations director for the Grand Teton Council. "The more food donated the better, as demand continues to increase."

Although the "Scouting for Food" program helps alleviate hunger in this area, there are some side benefits, too.

"Not only does the program go a long way towards feeding the hungry in our area, but the Scouts learn valuable lessons in performing a needed service for their communities," said Porter. "They definitely achieve a sense of pride in helping others."

Last year Scouts in Aberdeen collected approximately 2,500 cans of food. They are hoping to increase the amount this year because food banks all over the state are struggling to meet the needs of the community members. The items collected will stay within the community they were collected in to help the people there.

Anyone who is missed and would still like to donate may take the food directly to the food bank located at the Aberdeen Senior Citizen Center or drop it off at Kathy Blaker's home at 603 South 6th West for Aberdeen. In American Falls take it to the SEICAA office and in Springfield take it to the fire station or contact Sarah Peck.

For more information on Scouting For Food, contact local scout leaders or the Boy Scout Service Center at either 522-5155 or 233-4600.

Copyright 2009 The Aberdeen Times, Aberdeen, Idaho. All Rights Reserved. This content, including derivations, may not be stored or distributed in any manner, disseminated, published, broadcast, rewritten or reproduced without express, written consent from SmallTownPapers, Inc.

Original Publication Date: October 14, 2009

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