Stuff A Truck to Feed the Hungry
12/3/2016 6:19:30 p.m. - Hobbs, NM. [Story by Curtis Wynne, Hobbs News Sun]
A bus-load of students and staff from the New Mexico Junior College pulled into the Thriftway parking lot Thursday afternoon as the 19th annual Stuff-a-Truck Food Drive kicked off.
Under partnership of Noalmark Broadcasting Corporation, the Salvation Army of Hobbs and Thriftway, the drive will continue through Saturday.
The bus towed a travel trailer with 6,700 cans of food in boxes transferred to a full-length transport trailer.
Charlie Carroll, head of maintenance and grounds, said he brought students, faculty and maintenance workers to get the food transferred to the truck.
Normally collecting 3,500 to 4,000 cans of food for the drive, students and staff at the junior college set a record this year.
"We collected just over 6,700 cans of food," he said. "We bring them down this time every year. This is a record year for us. We've never collected this large a quantity."
Asked how they get the students so involved, Chris Howell, NMJC department chair for business and office technology, said, "Extra credit helps. Most of us offered a little extra credit. You know, five kids, ten cans. It all adds up. It's definitely a campus-wide effort."
Feeding the hungry families of Hobbs is the more altruistic motive, though, according to Thriftway owner Dale Carter. Pointing out the local Thrift-way has participated in the food drive since 2007, Carter expressed his appreciation for all the businesses and private organizations that contribute to Stuff-a-Truck.
According to a Noahmark news release, the goal of the food drive is to help raise 30,000 pounds of food for the Salvation Army Food Pantry, which serves over 350 families per month with food boxes.
In addition to the Food Pantry, Isaiah's Kitchen and Manna Outreach also receive food from the annual drive.
"This annual drive helps so many people in the community who are hungry," said Harry Harlan, Noalmark Broadcasting vice president and market manager. "It has been a tough year for many in our community and this is a great way to help those less fortunate this holiday season."
Harlan said the radio stations KIX-103, KZOR, KPZA, KOOL 95.7 and Eagle 100.5 Stuff-A-Truck project has been supported by Xcel Energy, Lea Regional Medical Center, McNabb Services, Nova Mud, Stone Oilfield Services, First United Methodist Church of Hobbs, Maclaskey Oilfield Services, Lucky Services, Lucky Rental Tools, TRM Trucking and Lucky Health and Safety.
Curtis Wynne may be contacted at 575-391-5436 or firstname.lastname@example.org.