We provided the incentive and Ozarks Food Harvest provided the bins, but Springfield-Greene County residents are the ones who made Food For Fines a reality.
Without you, we would have had empty bins and boxes in the week ending Feb. 2. Instead, you filled them with 7,433 pounds – almost 4 tons – of nonperishable food and hygiene items. Ozarks Food Harvest has already sorted and staged them for delivery to food banks and hungry Ozarks families.
This was our fourth “fine amnesty week,” in which patrons received a 50-cent discount on their overdue fine balance for each item of nonperishable food they donated at any library branch or the Mobile Library. We didn’t hit the 9,901 pounds of 2012, but we consider 7,433 a tremendous success. And since 2010, Food For Fines has collected almost 32,000 pounds of food for Ozarks Food Harvest. As a result of this year’s event from Jan. 27-Feb. 2, the library district forgave about $3,821 in fines.
“We were all smiles here at Ozarks Food Harvest when we saw that our local libraries packed an entire box truck full of food donations,” said Lindsey Neddenriep, public relations and event management coordinator at Ozarks Food Harvest.
“So far, it’s the largest food drive of 2013, and we expect it to be in the top five by the end of the year,” Lindsey said. “The drive really comes at a great time for us, as food drives tend to drop after the holiday season. The food collected will help provide more than 6,000 meals to our Ozarks neighbors in need, and we couldn’t be more grateful to everyone who participated.”
Library Executive Director Regina Greer Cooper agreed.
"One of our Library's values is 'synergy,' and the collaboration that goes into Food For Fines creates great synergy. It's a wonderful way for the Library to work with Ozarks Food Harvest while giving our patrons an opportunity to help themselves and help others in the Ozarks," Cooper said.
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What else is the library director saying? You can find out by following her at Twitter.com/ReginaGreerCoop.
Like many of her business and government counterparts, Regina considers Twitter another way to connect with the families we serve. She even broke some library news in her tweets this week, so tune in.
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