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Mendham Service Club Kicks Off 2013 Food Drive

Traditional food drive and online partnership with YouGiveGoods to benefit the Chester Food Pantry and Saint Michael's Food Pantry in Netcong.

A nineteen year tradition at Mendam High School continues with the 2013 Mendham HS Service Club Annual Food Drive Contest. Students are hoping that donations for this drive will exceed last year so they can replenish the depleted supplies at the Chester Food Pantry and Saint Michael’s Food Pantry in Netcong.  This year’s drive will use both traditional food collection as well as an online platform, created through YouGiveGoods.com.

“The online portion opens up a whole new community to us,” Russ Raffay, Mendham High School teacher and Service Club co-advisor said. “Students email their grandparents and other family members and friends and ask them to be part of the competition. It has been a great way to extend the drive and bring in even more quality food donations.”

Students in the school’s Service Club conduct the Annual Food Drive Contest - a friendly competition between a number of teams at school, to see who can raise the most food to help the hungry in Morris County. In addition, there is a competition between classes based on both the quality and quantity of food, with the top five classes winning an all-you-can-eat pizza party at school. Last year the Service Club donated $8,000 worth of food.

To help support the drive, which is running now through Feb. 17, participants can purchase food online or make a traditional donation and bring food into school.

Those who chose to make an online contribution simply pick your team and visit their Drive Page.  Donors can select the type of food they want to purchase and it will be delivered directly to the food pantry after the contest is over.

The traditional food collection portion of the drive stops at the end of the school day on Friday, Feb. 15, but participants can still donate online up to the last minute on Sunday, Feb. 17. 

"Last year Mendham students continued to compete with each other online right up until the midnight deadline," said Patrick O’Neill, CEO of YouGiveGoods, “It is exciting for them to watch the food totals grow and the winning teams emerge.”

Raffay said that food pantries are in desperate need of supplies this year, especially after Hurricane Sandy depleted supplies.

“It is good to get the students involved in caring for those who need it," Raffay said.

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