Help the Campus Pantry and the Community Food Bank during UA4Food

Help the Campus Pantry and the Community Food Bank during UA4Food

By Kyle MittanUniversity Communications
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UA President Robert C. Robbins collects a box of food during a previous Stuff the Cat Tran. This year's event will run 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. on April 8.
UA President Robert C. Robbins collects a box of food during a previous Stuff the Cat Tran. This year's event will run 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. on April 8.

Employees and students are encouraged to donate nonperishable food items during the annual UA4Food drive, which begins today.

The drive benefits the Campus Pantry and the Community Food Bank of Southern Arizona and runs through April 8.

During the drive, employees and students are encouraged to leave nonperishable food items in donation boxes, which will be placed in offices and common areas throughout campus.

The campus community is also encouraged to make monetary donations online, either to the Campus Pantry, via the University of Arizona Foundation, or to the Community Food Bank. Every dollar donated is worth $7.30 worth of groceries, according to the Community Food Bank.

All food and monetary donations will be split evenly between the Campus Pantry and the Community Food Bank. Last year's UA4Food drive collected a total of more than 3,100 pounds of food.

UA4Food is coordinated by Government and Community Relations and is supported by the Marshall Foundation. The drive is largely run by employee volunteers, known as UA4Food ambassadors, who manage collection efforts on behalf of their units. Those interested in serving as ambassadors can contact Karla Morales, interim director of the Office of Multicultural Advancement, at 520-621-5522 or kmorales12@email.arizona.edu.

"We want to make sure that we take a role in eliminating food insecurity on our campus and in our community overall," Morales said. "This provides all of us an opportunity to take part and to be part of the solution."

The most-needed food items include:

  • Peanut butter.
  • Boxed cereal.
  • Granola bars.
  • Canned tomato products.
  • Canned meat, soups, vegetables and fruit.
  • Rice and pasta.
  • Bags of beans.

In addition to the donation boxes and online giving opportunities, this year's drive also includes events in early April.

During Spring Fling, happening the weekend of April 3, attendees who bring four cans of food can get $5 off wristbands from 4-11 p.m. on April 3 and free admission between 11 a.m. and 6 p.m. on April 5.

UA4Food will end with Stuff the Cat Tran, an all-day event on April 8 where the campus community tries to fill a Cat Tran shuttle with boxes of donated food. The shuttle will be parked at the Cherry Avenue parking pullout at the intersection of Cherry Avenue and University Boulevard from 7 a.m.-6 p.m. Volunteers will spend the day loading food from collection boxes onto the bus, as well as taking last-day donations.

Stuff the Cat Tran is organized by the Classified Staff Council, the Appointed Professionals Advisory Council, Parking & Transportation Services and Government and Community Relations. Volunteers are needed to help collect and load donations. Those interested in helping are asked to contact Christina Rocha, research administrator in Research, Innovation and Impact and immediate past chair of the Classified Staff Council, at crocha@email.arizona.edu or 520-626-0180.

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