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Hunger in California’s 805 region — an ongoing concern

By Frank X. Moraga

It was a bountiful gathering, nearly 200,000 pounds of food collected during the weekend of Dec. 5-7 to provide for those in need in Ventura County.

FOOD Share — Ventura County’s Food Bank’s third annual CAN-Tree Collection more than doubled total donations from last year’s food drive, the organization reported in a media release.

The Collection’s Park View Court was lined with 225 CAN-trees built by business and community teams, as well as a 14-foot can-tree made of 10,000 cans of food donated by Ventura County Credit Union and constructed by students of ACE Charter High School, and members of the Ventura County Contractors Association and Naval Base Ventura County.

“We are overwhelmed by the generosity of those in our community who helped make this not only a fun event, but one which we hope will make a difference for those in need during the holidays,” Mike Powers, County of Ventura CEO and CAN-tree co-chair, stated in the release. “Working together with FOOD Share continues to be a wonderful and worthwhile experience.”

The third annual CAN-tree Collection drive was part of FOOD Share’s Tackle Hunger campaign. Courtesy FOOD Share.
Along with the donated food that will help restock the shelves of its Oxnard warehouse distribution center, FOOD Share hoped to collect more than $150,000 in monetary donations this holiday season.

“The outpouring of support we’ve received from the community and their efforts to give back to make this event the largest food drive of the year is incredible,” FOOD Share President and CEO Bonnie Weigel stated in the release. “We are grateful to have partners within the community who come back every year to support CAN-tree and inspire more people to join in our mission.”

The need continues
Holiday food drives were also held in Santa Barbara and San Luis Obispo counties. But while the collections helped fill the need during the holiday season, the battle against hunger in the 805 region remains a year-round effort…

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