Food Challenge begins today

The Rouse, the Times Observer and Second Harvest Food Bank of Northwest Pennsylvania are once again organizing the “Business to Business” Food Challenge benefiting the BackPack Program of Warren County.

The challenge partners ask that participating businesses collect food starting today and deliver their collection to Allegheny Valley Elementary School (AVES) on Friday, October 13.

The BackPack Program distributes packages filled with food to kids each Friday before they leave school, providing them with nutritious food to get them through the weekend.

The program helps approximately 350 children, or about 27% of the Warren County School District elementary population.

It takes about 55,000 pounds of food to feed the WCSD children in the program for the whole school year, so this year’s Business to Business goal is to collect canned pasta, soups, and fruit cups (pop-up tops work best).

Please contact Amy Trask at 563-6401, or email, if your business would like to participate. After informing a partner of your participation, you will receive a poster to hang at your collection area.

Individuals should drop their food donations off at the designated collection area for their employer. A point person from each business should bring the food to AVES on Friday October 13 , between 9:00 a.m. and 2:00 p.m.

Once all the donations are at AVES, they will be weighed and their poundage divided by a number of employees at that business. Monetary donations are also welcome. The top three collecting businesses, determined by the highest weight per employee, will be featured in the Times Observer and will receive a plaque to display at their business.

In addition, all participating businesses will get a certificate thanking them for their efforts. Last year 5035 lbs. of food and $5,454 were collected. The goal for 2017 is 6,000 lbs. of food and $6,000.