The Payson region continues to be severely impacted by the loss of jobs and lower family incomes. This year has been hard on families as food prices go up and the jobless rate is reported to be over 20 percent in Payson.
To counter this, the Payson area churches and community embarked on a volunteer food drive on Nov. 1, 2011. The effort was designated as the “Payson Area Food Drive.” This is the third year we have performed the food drive. Our objective is to make sure that no families would go hungry in the Payson area in 2012. This objective required that we collect food and money so the food banks’ shelves would never be empty during the year.
After three months of united community effort and work, the food drive is complete. We can happily report it was a resounding success!
We had very high goals of 65,000 pounds of food and $35,000. We collected over 68,000 pounds and $35,000 received.
So all our goals were met!
This very significant accomplishment required the efforts of the entire Payson area community. Donations came from many areas of the community including churches, schools, businesses, service clubs, health providers, government employees and Boy Scouts. Both Rotary clubs were very helpful. Media support was wonderful including the Payson Roundup newspaper and KMOG radio.
Additionally, Payson donated 380 turkeys on Turkey Tuesday for Thanksgiving dinners.
We want to thank each and every person that gave their support, money and food. Payson area families reached into their pocketbook and their food baskets to give and share with their neighbors. They gave from their hearts.
All of these donations will stay in the Payson area and go directly to help Payson area families. This food drive was successful without any government involvement, taxes or overhead cost. Yes, Payson is the “Heart of Arizona.”
We encourage the community to continue to support the food banks throughout the year with their direct contributions to the food banks. Thank you Payson, and most importantly, your neighbors who are suffering economically say “thank you!”
As our mascot, Woody the Squirrel, said, “If you care, share.” You did it in a wonderful way.
Roger Kreimeyer, chairman,
Payson Area Food Drive
P.S. Watch for developments of the Payson Community Garden.