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Holiday food drives, other campus efforts under way to aid the needy

By Dave Jones on November 16, 2012 in University

Two food drives this holiday season are aimed at filling the shelves at The Pantry, the campus food bank that opened last year to assist students who may be skipping meals for financial reasons.

Other campus efforts are under way on behalf of Toys for Tots, Coats for Kids and the Food Bank of Yolo County. Professor Lloyd Knox, for example, has organized a physics department team to participate in the Running of the Turkeys, a food bank fundraiser — and he is urging other campus units to do the same. See below for more information on all these efforts.

Partners in The Pantry include the ASUCD and the Graduate Student Association, the Campus Advising Network, fraternities and sororities, the Office of Campus Community Relations and the Office of the Vice Chancellor of Student Affairs.

The Cal Aggie Student Alumni Association is running a canned food drive through next Wednesday (Nov. 21), the day before Thanksgiving, with all donations going to The Pantry. You can make donations at the Causeway Classic football game this weekend.

Then, after Thanksgiving, Campus Recreation and Unions will collect food for The Pantry and the Food Bank of Yolo County.

Here are the details:

Cal Aggie Student Alumni Association — Board members this fall started Together We Can as a way to help The Pantry, which in turn provides food to students who may otherwise skip meals for financial reasons.

At the Causeway Classic, Saturday (Nov. 17) at Aggie Stadium, student volunteers will collect food donations from 1 p.m. until kickoff at 3.

Volunteers also are collecting food from noon to 1 p.m. weekdays through Nov. 21 on the Memorial Union’s south patio.

For more information, contact Veronica Meza, co-director of community service in the Cal Aggie Student Alumni Association,

Campus Recreation and Unions — Campus Rec has been running a holiday food drive since 2009. This year, it becomes the Campus Rec and Unions Food Drive, reflecting the merger of the units.

This year’s drive runs from Nov. 26 to Dec. 16. Donation bins will be located at the Activities and Recreation Center, Craft Center (South Silo), Equestrian Center, Outdoor Adventures and the Student Community Center, and at two places in the Memorial Union: the Games Area (downstairs, under the bookstore) and the Guest Services Desk (east wing, first floor).

When deciding where to drop off your donations, keep in mind this special offer in the Games Area: for every item you donate, you can spin a prize wheel for a chance to win game tokens, bowling lane rentals, table time, coupons and more.

Acceptable donations for the Campus Rec and Unions drive include canned foods (stew, chili, soup, beans, vegetables), tuna and canned meat, peanut butter, low-sugar cereals, 100 percent fruit juices and canned fruit packaged in juice. Perishable or frozen foods and items in glass will not be accepted.

Mail Services food drive

Another food drive ends Friday (Nov. 16). Mail Services personnel have been collecting donations with departments’ outgoing mail since Nov. 1, on the Davis and Sacramento campuses.

No word yet on how much food has come in so far. Davis campus donations will go to the Food Bank of Yolo County, and Sacramento donations will go to the Sacramento Food Bank & Family Services.

Running for the Turkeys

This 5-kilometer event starts at 9 a.m. Thanksgiving morning, Nov. 22, in Woodland. "Thanks to the run's sponsors, every penny of each $25 entry fee goes straight to supporting the work of the food bank," said Professor Knox, who serves on the food bank's board of directors.

"So far Team Physics has a dozen participants registered," he said.

More information is available here, for people interested in joining Team Physics or starting their own teams. Then, when you are ready to register, click here.

Toys for Tots

A Toys for Tots drive is scheduled to begin Monday (Nov. 19), co-sponsored by Staff Assembly, Materiel Management and the Yolo County Marine Detachment.

They ask for new and unwrapped gifts for children from infant to age 14.

Donations are welcome through Dec. 15 in bins around the campus. The Toys for Tots flier lists the drop-off sites.

For more information, contact Pam Nardinelli, Staff Assembly coordinator, (530) 752-0988 or

Coats for Kids

And while we have you thinking about donating to holiday food drives, there's another collection effort we want to tell you about: Coats for Kids, a drive put on annually by Sacramento television station News 10.

UC Davis staff member Janet Tillinghast is once again setting up campus collection baskets for Coats for Kids, and the Police Department is taking donations, too.

“I just think that some are more fortunate than others and why shouldn’t we lend a hand if we can,” said Tillinghast, an administrative assistant at the Center for Laboratory Animal Science. She started at UC Davis in 2011 as the campus engraver.

Coats for Kids drop-off locations: Bargain Barn and the Police Department on the main campus, and Mail Services at the Hopkins Services Complex on the west campus.

Hurricane Sandy

On the other side of the country, the American Red Cross continues to focus on reaching as many people as possible who need help in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy. Donations to help the Red Cross do its work can be made online.

Follow Dateline UC Davis on Twitter.

Media contact(s)

Dave Jones, Dateline, 530-752-6556,