How to Start a Food Drive

A food drive is a concentrated effort to collect food for distribution to the needy. Food drives require a considerable amount of planning. You must think about the mode of collection and where the collection points will be located. You have to let people know that you're running a food drive. If you're donating the food to a food bank, you have to decide if it will be collected or if you will have to take it there. And, of course you have to decide when exactly to hold the food drive [source: Low Country Food Bank]. Here are some ideas about how to start a food drive.

  1. Six weeks before Organize a small committee of volunteers. Designate different people to head sub-committees in charge of planning, promotion, collection and recruiting volunteers. Contact local businesses and schools, as well as other institutions and let them know about the event. Design a flyer advertising the event, including suggestions of what people might donate.
  2. Four weeks before Follow-up with all those you contacted. Make the necessary arrangements with the food bank. Check that the dates you have decided on work well for the institutions from whom you intend to collect food. Ensure there will be space there for the food donation points. Distribute the flyers. Discuss further publicity with your committee.
  3. Two weeks before Organize the intended delivery of the food to the food bank. Arrange to have the food picked up, if possible. Otherwise, organize volunteers to deliver the food.
  4. One week before Confirm the delivery date with the receiving food bank. Design instructional flyers for the volunteers. Ensure you have enough volunteers, and that the volunteers know their tasks. Volunteers will help advertise, set up donation points and transport food if necessary. Distribute your advertising flyers to as wide an audience as possible. You can also advertise on community Web sites.
  5. One day before Ensure everything's ready. Remind all the institutions about the food drive. Post a reminder on the community Web sites.
  6. On the day Make the donation sites as attractive as possible [source: University of Maine].

Good luck with your food drive!