AUGUSTA – The hundreds of pounds of food collected by the First Family during their Second Annual Blaine House Food Drive will be filling the cupboards of Mainers in need within the week.
Yesterday, a box truck from the Auburn-based Good Shepherd Food Bank picked-up the 1,568 pounds of nonperishable food items Governor Paul R. LePage and First Lady Ann M. LePage received from hundreds of generous Mainers over the past three Saturday donation days.
The haul – nearly triple the amount collected last year – included many of the nutritious staple items that Good Shepherd hopes to see donated this time of year, including canned fruits and vegetables, rice and pasta, tuna fish and soup, as well as Thanksgiving foods such as stuffing and green beans.
The food will be inspected, then sorted and sent to the shelves of distribution centers in Brewer, Auburn and Portland, where it will be picked-up by food pantries and meal programs to distribute in their communities.
“The First Lady and I were honored to open the Blaine House for this critical cause. As someone who has been without, I know how meaningful these donations are in helping those less fortunate as they get on their feet,” said Governor LePage. “The generosity Maine people are known for was truly on display during this food drive. I want to thank all who donated – or who will give to their neighbors in need this holiday season through organizations like Good Shepherd – for their compassion and commitment to improving the lives of their fellow citizens.”
Good Shepherd – the largest hunger relief organization in the state – supplies sufficient amounts of food from Kittery to Fort Kent through their partner network of more than 600 food pantries, soup kitchens and other hunger relief organizations. 40 percent of those it serves are children.
“We thank the Governor and the First Family for making this commitment to help Good Shepherd Food Bank fight hunger in Maine. The support we receive from the community is what allows the Food Bank to distribute 13 million of pounds of food a year to our partner food pantries and meal sites,” said Kristen Miale, president of the Good Shepherd Food Bank. “The donations collected during this food drive will make a big difference for families across the state that are struggling to put food on the table this holiday season.”