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ACUA food drive helps meet need during critical post-superstorm ‘Sandy’ time

More than 40,600 pounds of food were added to the shelves of the Community Food Bank in Egg Harbor Township recently, thanks to the generosity of residents participating in Atlantic County Utilities Authority’s 22nd annual holiday food drive, which ran from December 3 through December 14.

“For the past 22 years, recycling crews have collected food donations at the curb of each residence, along with recyclables, in every Atlantic County community serviced by the ACUA, said Rick Dovey, president of the ACUA. “The ACUA originated this concept of ‘helping those in need, while helping the environment’ back in 1990. Since that time it’s gratifying to know that the concept has spread to Morris, Mercer and Middlesex counties because it’s such a convenient way to donate and make a difference.  As the provider of recycling collection services in Ocean City, ACUA brought the same model to residents there,” Dovey noted.

“Over the past 22 years, the ACUA food drive has collected more than 734,000 pounds of food that directly benefits families in need,” said Community Food Bank of New Jersey, Southern Branch Executive Director Margie Barham. “The response from residents year after year is phenomenal and this food drive recharges our supplies at a critical time. It’s hard to quantify just how important this program is to us, especially after these past couple of months following super-storm Sandy.” Barham said.

Of course, the collections would not be possible with a dedicated and experienced recycling collections staff who are able to deftly tell the difference between recyclables and food donations, which are many times look similar sitting on the curb.

“The ACUA collections staff always rise to the occasion, and do a great job collecting donations. They realize how important this program is in helping the disadvantaged who are served by the Community Food Bank,” Dovey added.

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