How to host a food Drive

Exciting! You’ve decided to help fight hunger in Boonton and the surrounding areas and are planning to hold a food drive. Don’t panic! If you are working with Loaves and Fishes, we’ll help guide you through the process every step of the way. Check out these easy tips for making your food drive a success.  When you are ready to get started, let us know by reaching out through our volunteer sign up form.

Pick a Theme

Let’s face it: we all love themes. One way to get people excited about your food drive is to ask for items related to a specific idea or topic such as breakfast foods, school lunches, or taco night. At a loss? We are here to help. Here is a list of 10 themed food drive examples to help you reach your food collection goal:

  1. Back-to-School Drive (peanut butter, jelly)
  2. Baking Drive (flower, sugar, cake mix, powered sugar, brownie mix, cake mix, food dye, candles)
  3. BBQ Drive (ketchup, mustard, BBQ sauce, Mayo, Beans, Chips, Pretzels, Canned Vegetables and canned fruit)
  4. Shark Week (only items in a can from the sea)
  5. Christmas in The Summer (instant mashed potatoes, stuffing, canned or packaged gravy, canned vegetables, canned fruit, rice, crackers, pudding, jello, team, coffee, canned soup)
  6. Going Hungry is Nuts and Let’s “Crack” The Code to Fighting Hunger! (all kinds of nut and nut products, cracker and cookie products).
  7. Earth Day or Be Green Day (pickles, green pasta, canned green vegetables)
  8. Boston Tea Party (all items you’d have for tea including variety of tea bag boxes, crackers, cookies, sugar, baking products, coffee, powered milk)
  9. Let’s Get Personal (products like razors, female personal products, toothbrushes, tooth paste, deodorant, etc.)
  10. Baby Shower (all things for a baby including diapers, baby wipes, shampoo, bottled baby food, baby powder, etc.)

Location is everything

Consider who will be donating and select a location where your food drive will be most visible. Good options include grocery stores, gyms, libraries, schools, and offices.

Make it a Competition

Come up with an incentive or a prize to build energy and excitement about your food drive. Holding a food drive a school? Give the class who collects the most food a pizza party. Holding a food drive at work? If the team collects 250 items, have a special bagel breakfast on Friday. Other ideas include discount coupons for donors or a raffle entry. Be creative!

Don’t do it alone

You don’t want to hold a food drive by yourself: recruit anyone and everyone to help you out. Ask friends and family to help spread the word about your food drive. Maybe they can collect additional food for your food drive at work or school.

Think BIG!

Stop by your local grocery store or convenience store and let them know that you are collecting food for the local food bank. Do they have any non-perishable items that they could donate?

Spread the word

Hang posters and fliers around town to let everyone know when/where to drop off food. Contact the local newspaper, radio and TV station to let them know about the event. Be sure to tell your friends and ask them to tell their friends, who should tell their friends! If you all use a networking site, such as Facebook, this can be even easier. The more people that know about it, the more donations you’ll get.

End your food drive
the “right” way

Officially end the food drive by thanking everyone who donated and letting them know how much food you collected. A photo is a great way to illustrate how much food you collected. Make sure to get a friend to take a photo of you with all of your donations! Post your photo on Facebook or send it around in an email to thank everyone for their help. We will be sure to post any pictures on our website and also use for social media.