This week, USDA was recognized at the 3rd Annual Feds Feed Families Closing Ceremony at the Pentagon. Employees around the country started over 2,000 food drives that led the department to contribute the most pounds per employee of any federal department or agency: almost 15 pounds per employee for a total of 1,791,393 pounds of food! USDA was also recognized for bringing in the most donations in the large division category and for donating the most pounds of food during the month of August. Thanks especially to our People’s Gardens around the country and employees’ innovative gleaning efforts, USDA recorded 1,397,475 pounds of food for the final month of the food drive.
Employees from every mission area and state participated and helped the department exceed the initial call to raise 500,000 pounds of food. Nearly 100 USDA employees were included on the Office of Personnel Management’s (OPM) Hall of Fame for making one-time donations of 250 pounds or more. And many more employees joined together to fill the shelves of food banks and pantries. This further demonstrates our employees’ dedication to caring and sharing in the communities they serve.
In total, 53 different federal departments and agencies participated in the food drive, leading to a grand total of 5,783,446 pounds of food donations. To break that number down further, that comes to about 64,000 pounds of food donations each day of the food drive. The federal government-wide goal for the summer was two million pounds of food, a goal that was exceeded nearly three-fold!
OPM Director John Berry thanked federal employees for their donations: “Feds Feed Families was a resounding success. This year’s goal was two million pounds and federal employees opened up their hearts to deliver an astounding record total of food items and other essentials. This is just one more reminder of the generosity of federal employees. Over the last few decades, federal employees have given billions of dollars to charity, and they always deliver when called to action. Thank you to every federal worker who donated.”