BOONE, N.C. – App State Athletics is partnering with the Boone-based Hunger and Health Coalition to help those in need in the High Country, and the first opportunity for the Mountaineer faithful to assist is just around the corner.
Volunteers from the Hunger and Health Coalition will be collecting food items prior to the Dec. 2 home football game vs. Louisiana, scheduled for a 2:30 p.m. kickoff. Beginning at 12 p.m., fans can bring any non-perishable foods to the East or West gates at Kidd Brewer Stadium. Any store-bought, non-expired goods will be accepted, but there is a special need for peanut butter, oatmeal/rolled oats, dry beans, rice, pastas, breakfast cereals, jelly, tuna, spaghetti sauce and all canned fruits and vegetables.
Since 1982, the Hunger and Health Coalition has provided services attempting to alleviate food and prescription medicine insecurity for clients in the High Country. The coalition offers many services, including a food pantry, fresh market and free pharmacy. The organization focuses many of its efforts on assisting children and the elderly.
In 2016 alone, the coalition distributed 10,464 food boxes, had 27,292 client visits, dispensed 17,223 life-sustaining prescriptions for a savings of $2,063,207, and distributed 8,000 backpacks to local children.
“We are thrilled to partner with the Hunger and Health Coalition and offer whatever help we can as an athletics department,” App State Director of Athletics Doug Gillin said. “Collecting food items at our sporting events is a perfect opportunity, among many, to help fight hunger and give back to our local community that provides so much support to Appalachian. We look forward to working with the Hunger and Health Coalition in the future to identify impactful ways App State Athletics can continue to support those in need in our community.”
Fans to will have another opportunity to donate food items at the Jan. 11 home basketball doubleheader vs. Georgia State, as well as additional dates to be announced in the coming weeks.
“It is such an honor to be able to partner with App State’s athletics department,” Hunger and Health Executive Director Elizabeth Young said. “This upcoming food drive will go a long way toward helping to ensure that the one in four children in our area that face food insecurity do not go to bed hungry at night. Appalachian State University’s advocacy is a game changer for the 31 percent of High Country residents who live in poverty.”