Monday, December 6, 2010

Faculty and staff food drive

A message from our colleague and member, Raquel Casas:

As you well know, the current economic recession has negatively impacted members of the UNLV community. We have had anecdotal information that some employees and students at UNLV are going hungry and facing continued economic duress. But of course how many within the UNLV community are in need is difficult to ascertain. To help those in need of assistance, UNLV CARES, GPSA, and a sub-committee of the PAC organized a food drive and collected almost 1700 non-perishable food items that were distributed on November 18 and 19. To those who generously donated to the November food drive, we would like to thank you on behalf of those who directly benefitted from these donations. It was truly appreciated and needed by members of the UNLV family.

Our records indicated that 41 staff and students picked up non-perishable food items. And according to a short survey filled out by the majority of these individuals they have families; the food drive provided food for at least 137 individuals. The majority of individuals who availed themselves of the food bank were classified personnel with families, which suggest some employees at UNLV are finding it difficult to provide sufficiently for their families. It also suggests that any continued or expanded pay cuts or furloughs will further stress these and other UNLV families.

I wish I could say that this is the full extent of hunger at UNLV. However, food was collected for only five days and the food pick up was only advertised for approximately a week previous to the pick up. We can only assume that many in need were unaware of this event. UNLV staff and students receiving food from the food drive indicated via survey that they would appreciate more of these events and we invite the UNLV community to support these continued endeavors.

We will be having monthly food drives. The next one will begin on December 1 through December 9 with drop off boxes placed throughout the university, the SU, Library, SEB and Wellness Center, and will distribute the donated items on December 13 and December 16 at CSB 146. We will also be collecting goods at the UNLV Holiday Party and encourage those attending to bring at least one item for donation. We are hoping that word of mouth and continuous advertising of this event will reach all those in need as well as encourage the community to continue in its generosity to donate more non-perishables. We would also like to call for volunteers to mainly help in picking up the donations, with enough volunteers the time commitment would be minimal, perhaps an hour or two a week. Any and all suggestions to help in these efforts would be greatly appreciated and for those interested in helping please contact one of the following organizers:

Connie Nolan,, 895-4095
Sandra Gajkowski,, 895-4952
Geetha Sendhil,, 895-0400
Kyle George,, 8995-5339
Maria Raquel Casas,, 895-1544
Sandra Owens,, 895-2893

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