Arlington Boy Scouts will be out in force Saturday, collecting food donations as part of their annual Scouting for Food effort.
If you received a bag along with a flier asking you to donate food to the Arlington Food Assistance Center last weekend, you can expect a group of Boy Scouts to stop by your house this Saturday morning to pick up donations.
Arlington Boy Scout troops and Cub Scout packs have partnered with the Arlington Food Assistance Center to host Scouting for Food. Last Saturday the boys walked the neighborhoods of Arlington County, leaving fliers and donation bags on porches and doorsteps. This Saturday starting at 9 a.m. the scouts will be returning to those same porches and doorsteps to collect bags that have been filled with donations.
The Arlington Food Assistance Center is a community-based, nonprofit food pantry that serves more than 1,000 people in the Arlington area. Families in need can come to the center once a week and pick up about 40 pounds of groceries. Center Director Charles Meng said the Boy Scouts’ work brings in a “tremendous amount of food for us.”
Meng said the amount of needed food increases in the winter months. The center served “an all-time high” of 1,655 people last January. The center is currently serving 1,400 people each week, but Meng expects that number to rise as the temperatures drop.
Arlington-area scouts have been helping the food center prepare for the winter months for more than 15 years. Last year the group collected 60,000 pounds of food during Scouting for Food. Meng said the center goes through that much food in one week.
If you would like to contribute to the Arlington Food Assistance Center, you may fill the Scouting for Food bag you received with non-refrigerated food and place it on your doorstep by 9 a.m. Saturday, Nov. 10.
If you did not receive a bag, the scouts will not be coming to your neighborhood, but you can make a donation at the Cherrydale or Lee-Harrison Safeways from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Monday, Nov. 12.
What should you donate?*
- Low-sugar cereals
- Canned meat
- Low-syrup canned fruits
- Low-sodium canned soups
- 2-pound bags of sugar
- 2-pound bag of flour
- Pasta sauce
- Cooking oil
The Arlington Food Assistance Center asks that items not be packaged in glass containers.