Stuff-A-Truck helps local families for the holidays

Staff Writer
Devils Lake Journal
Amy Hoffmeyer is all smiles as she stands with the truck-loads of items brought in to the Hope Center's food pantry by the Stuff-A-Truck food drive.

How many trucks did Stuff-A-Truck fill?

CMS students and all the Leevers Foods customers - both North Store and South Store - filled several trucks with donations to fill the shelves at the Hope Center’s food pantry - and just in time for the holidays!

According to Amy Hoffmeyer, who is the director of the Hope Center, the shelves had been getting bare until the donations started rolling in from the annual food drive where both Leevers Foods stores partner with the Central Middle School students to make each year’s Stuff-A-Truck better than the year before.

This was the twelfth year for Stuff-A-Truck for Leevers and the best year so far, according to project coordinator Dave Brustad who manages the Leevers South. It was the third year for the CMS students and their best effort, too.

“If it weren’t for the CMS students, we wouldn’t do nearly as well,” he admits. This year Brustad took part in the kickoff event at CMS where students were challenged to bring items to donate to the food pantry.

The entire middle school gathered in the gymnasium for a rally where Brustad spoke about the need for donations to the city’s food pantry.

The Stuff-A-Truck committee of the CMS Student Council came up with a unique incentive this year to encourage students to donate. The student who brought the most items to donate would be able to smush a pie in the face of a favorite teacher.

Mr. Mike Pfeifer won by a landslide and Abbey Olson, 8th grader, won the honors by donating 173 items.

In all Brustad and Hoffmeyer estimated that more than 4,000 lbs of items were collected this year alone. They are still weighing in items, so it could be more.

Another figure that wasn’t finalized as of this printing was the total amount of cash collected. In fact Brustad said that if you missed out on participating in the Stuff-A-Truck campaign you could still contribute at either Leevers location.

All donations are welcome and all donations go to families in need locally.

In addition to the regular food pantry collection, the CMS students have collected items by going “Trick or canning” instead of “Trick or Treating” at Halloween. They hope to increase that participation next year, too.

Plus they held an activity night and dance on a Friday night at CMS and to get in free a student had to bring at least five items to donate to the food pantry.

Also, the Character Counts! program at CMS donated $300 to help distribute Thanksgiving food baskets through the Hope Center.

Local families in need will, no doubt, have a much nicer Thanksgiving and Christmas season thanks to all who have given to Stuff-A-Truck.