Now in its 27th year, the National Association of Letter Carriers’ annual food drive, Stamp Out Hunger, will take place this Saturday, May 11. Letter carriers will pick up canned goods and other non-perishable food left by customers in marked bags as part of this national effort to alleviate hunger for millions of affected Americans.

This enormously successful food drive is a joint effort shared by letter carriers, their co-workers, friends, family, and community partners. This year’s partners include the U.S. Postal Service, the National Rural Letter Carriers’ Association, United Food and Commercial Workers International Union, AFL-CIO, Valpak Direct Marketing Systems, United Way Worldwide and its local United Ways, AARP Foundation, and Valassis.

The food drive always takes place on the second Saturday of May and regularly elicits a strong response. Last year, for example, letter carriers collected 71.6 million pounds of non-perishable food donations from more than 10,000 cities and towns in all 50 states plus the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, Guam, and the U.S. Virgin Islands. The 2018 amount brought the quarter-century total to nearly 1.7 billion pounds.

With its local presence and national reach, the Postal Service touches every American nearly every day. Americans often view their letter carriers as their direct contact with and connection to the Postal Service. This national food drive event is one of the efforts that ties USPS more closely to the communities it serves.

Do you participate in the annual Stamp Out Hunger food drive? Do you see the postal infrastructure as important to providing larger societal benefits? Do you have any other ideas that could benefit the nation through use of the Postal Service’s delivery network? Share your thoughts below.