Everett High teens collect for school’s holiday food drive

EVERETT — Thousands of pounds of food are collected at hundreds of places around Snohomish County each year.

Students at Everett High School have been collecting food for the school’s holiday food drive and they plan to deliver the donations to families Tuesday.

Shelly Waller, the leadership class teacher at Everett High, said Colby Avenue in front of the school auditorium is shutting down all day so the students’ cars can be loaded up to make the deliveries.

Volunteers of America food banks are the recipients of about 100 food drives in November and December, including the one at Everett High School.

“In January, it slows down to about 10 food drives a month” said Sharon Paskewitz, director of Operations of Volunteers of America Western Washington.

Each year, the nonprofit organization gives the school a list of families who can benefit from the food drive. Everett High School has been participating for more than 10 years, providing help to hundreds of households over the years, Waller said.

The leadership class, with its two chairmen, Alee Dedrick, a senior, and Cameron Blas, a junior, and 30 other students, organized the food drive this year. The entire school participated, with students and teachers collecting food and money.

Last year, the school delivered food to 150 families and raised $12,000 for the food bank. So far this month, they have collected more than $13,000 and hope to collect $1,000 more. This year, they expect to provide food for 200 families in need.

“We are gonna be probably over the goal,” Waller said. “This is the most ever collected.”

Volunteers of America has served 22,762 people since the beginning of the year, an increase of 11 percent from last year, Paskewitz said.

“For the holiday season, we would have the same number of individuals in need of holiday food,” Paskewitz said. She also added that her organization receives an average of $75,000 in donations during the holiday season.

The food is collected from homes, but Everett High students also collected donations at grocery stores. Some of their classrooms became food storage places.

“Students are giving and willing to provide the community,” Waller said.

The truckload of fresh food had been scheduled to be unloaded starting at 5 a.m. Tuesday. Students plan to unload it and pack the food into boxes that the students will deliver, Waller said.

Each family is to receive a box of holiday food.

“They will get a turkey, milk, vegetables, potatoes, a pumpkin pie and whipped cream,” Waller said.

The school’s leftover food is to be split among St. Vincent de Paul’s food bank, the Everett Food Bank and the school’s food bank. The cash goes to buy food and pay overhead expenses at Volunteers of America, Paskewitz said.

“Our food bank focus is on families with children,” Paskewitz said.

“However, we would provide food to anyone who walks in the door who is hungry.”

How to help

The Everett Food Bank is located at 2802 Broadway. Donation checks can be mailed to P.O. Box 839, Everett, WA 9820. More information is available by calling 425-259-3191 or going online at voaww.org.

Food banks

Arlington Community Food Bank, 18810 59th Drive NE, Arlington, WA 98223, needs food supplies and cash donations. Nonperishable food donations are accepted from 9 to 11 a.m. Mondays and Thursdays and by appointment. More information: 360-435-1631 and www.arlingtonfoodbank.org.

* The Arlington Fire Department also raises cash and collects donations for the food bank during its annual Santa Run from Dec. 7-16 through the city’s neighborhoods. Go to www.santarun.net.

* Arlington American Legion Post 76 also raises money for toys for food bank clients in Arlington. The post has enlisted the help of all the banks and credit unions in Arlington and Smokey Point where people can make donations.

Concern for Neighbors Food Bank, 4700 228th St. SW, Mountlake Terrace, WA 98043, needs food and cash. Donations are accepted from 8:30 a.m. to noon Mondays and from 9:30 a.m. to noon on Tuesdays or by appointment. More information: 425-778-7227

The Carol Rowe Memorial Food Bank, 828 Caspers St., Edmonds, WA 98020, is at Edmonds United Methodist Church. Food and cash are needed. Donations are accepted through the north door of the church from 9 a.m. to 8:30 p.m. More information: 425-778-5833 or www.edmondsumc.org/foodbank.

Darrington Food Bank, at First Baptist Church on Highway 530 in Darrington, is open the first week of each month. To donate or volunteer, call 360-436-9603.

Everett Food Bank is run by Volunteers of America at 2802 Broadway, Everett, WA 98206. VOA provides food to more than 3,300 households each month, including hundreds of home food deliveries to seniors. It provides housing for families in crisis and runs three preschools for low-income children. Checks can be mailed to P.O. Box 839, Everett, WA 98206. Volunteers and food donations are also needed. More information: 425-259-3191 or www.voaww.org

Lynnwood Food Bank, 5320 176th St. SW, Lynnwood, WA 98037, serves residents in the 98036, 98037, 98012 and 98087 ZIP codes. The food bank needs nonperishable food, turkeys, holiday food and monetary help. More information: 425-745-1635 or www.lynnwoodfoodbank.org

Marysville Community Food Bank and Toy Store, 4150 88th St. NE, Marysville, WA 98270, needs food and cash, as well as gift cards and unwrapped new toys. Donations are accepted Tuesday afternoons and Monday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday mornings at the food bank. Especially needed are frozen hams and turkeys, diapers, stocking stuffers and new toys. Red collection barrels around town also supply the food bank. Volunteers are always needed. Checks can be mailed to Marysville Community Food Bank, P.O. Box 917, Marysville, WA 98270. More information: 360-658-1054 or www.marysvillefoodbank.org

Maltby Food Bank, 21104 86th Ave. SE, Snohomish, WA 98296, provides food for families in the southeast corner of the Monroe School District. The food bank is open from 2 to 5:30 p.m. Thursdays. Donations of food, new unwrapped toys and senior gift cards are needed. More information: 360-668-7900 or maltby foodbank.org

Mukilteo Food Bank, 4514 84th St, SW, Mukilteo, WA 98275, needs donations of food and baby supplies dropped off at Mukilteo Presbyterian Church. More information: 425-493-8729 or www.mukilteofoodbank.org

Oso Community Food Bank at Oso Community Church, 22318 Highway 530 NE, Arlington, WA 98223, is open on the third Friday of the month from 12:30 to 2 p.m. Donations of non-perishable food and cash are accepted. More information: 360-403-7954

Hands of Hope Food Bank, 9021 Evergreen Way, Everett, operates in the basement of the Lifepoint Everett Church. Donations of food are accepted from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Tuesdays, noon to 6 p.m. Wednesdays. Cash donations can be mailed or made online, and volunteers are also needed. More information: 425-405-4395.*

Lake Stevens Community Food Bank, 2111 117th Ave. NE. Lake Stevens, WA, 98258, provides food to approximately 250 families every month. The food bank needs nonperishable food and monetary donations. Donations are accepted at the facility in the basement of the Ebenezer Lutheran Church from 9 to 11 a.m. Monday through Thursday. More information: 425-334-3430

Salt of the Earth Food Bank has eight locations in Snohomish County and feeds more than 6,000 people each month. Volunteers are needed to pick up, sort and distribute food. Donations of turkeys are needed. Monetary donations should be mailed to Salt of the Earth Food Bank, 2908 118th Place SE, Everett, WA 98208. More information: 425-355-1042

Sky Valley Food Bank of Monroe is collecting turkeys, holiday foods, new unwrapped toys and baby supplies for more than 500 families. Donations can be dropped off Monday, Wednesday and Friday mornings at 233 Sky River Parkway, Monroe. Monetary donations, used to buy food at bulk prices, can be mailed to Sky Valley Food Bank, P.O. Box 724, Monroe, WA 98272. More information: 360-794-7959 or www.svfoodbank.org

Snohomish Community Food Bank, 1330 Ferguson Park Road, Snohomish, provides food to 400 families who live within the boundaries of the Snohomish School District. The food bank is open to accept donations from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Monday through Friday and 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Saturday. Volunteer help and donations of cash, turkeys, hams and unwrapped new toys are needed. Checks can be mailed to P.O. Box 1364, Snohomish, WA 98291. Groups are encouraged to participate in the food bank’s Holiday Pledge Program. More information: 360-568-7993

Stanwood Camano Food Bank and Thrift Store, 27030 102nd Ave. NW, accepts donations during business hours. Checks can be mailed to P.O. Box 1285, Stanwood, WA 98292. More information: 360-629-2789 or www.stanwood camanofoodbank.org

Volunteers of America Everett Food Bank, 2802 Broadway, provides food to more than 3,300 households each month, including hundreds of home food deliveries to seniors. It provides housing for families in crisis and runs three preschools for low-income children. Checks can be mailed to P.O. Box 839, Everett, WA 98206. Volunteers and food donations are also needed. More information: 425-259-3191 or www.voaww.org.

*Correction, Nov. 26, 2013: The address and phone number for Hands of Hope Food Bank were incorrect in an earlier version of this story.

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