Molly Mulligan is hoping to have more cans than she can handle, more cans of vegetables, soups, beans and prepared foods than she knows what to do with.
Because the more cans she and the rest of the student council, faculty and parents collect from generous district residents, the more friends in need they can feed.
“It’s really just as much as possible,” Molly, a Hatboro-Horsham senior and student council president, said of the goods needed to fuel the sixth annual food collection drive. “It’s unlike other canned food drives. We’re helping people that are just within our school district. These are families that live next to you.”
While the names of families being helped remains private, student council co-advisor Dave Thomas said the community’s willingness to give - year after year - is attributed in large part to the fact that their donations are helping their neighbors, their kids’ classmates and their friends.
“It’s like this six-year tradition that people just give. It’s becoming this huge thing of coolness,” Thomas said, adding that any overages would be given to ’s food bank. “It’s a good problem (to have) if all the donations come in.”
And those donations are expected to start pouring in this weekend. Molly and the rest of the 100-member student council last week canvassed the Hatboro and Horsham communities, dropping off non-perishable food collection bags to about 10,000 residences. On Dec. 10, students, teachers and parents will make rounds to collect those contributions left next to mailboxes, Molly said.
“Inevitably we missed some houses,” Molly said, adding that those residents could still leave donations out by their mailbox on Dec. 10 before 9 a.m. for pickup.
Molly, who has been involved in Feed A Friend during her four years of high school, has enjoyed seeing the effort grow throughout her high school career from feeding about 30 families her first year, to . This year, Thomas said “it’s definitely looking like 100 plus.”
When the food is distributed on Dec. 23, each family will receive a ham or a turkey, as well as enough food to last several weeks, Thomas said. In all, the food per family costs about $100 to $150, he said.
Thomas said a new initiative called Magical Mornings will become part of the Feed A Friend campaign this year. The giving tree based effort calls for at least one $25 gift to be given per each of the households helped through Feed A Friend.
How you can help
1. Place your donations of canned, non-perishable food items out by your mailbox for pickup on Dec. 10 by 9 a.m. In the event of rain or snow on Dec. 10, the pickup would be moved to Dec. 17 by 9 a.m.
2. Drop off collapsed cardboard boxes to be used for food packaging at Hatboro-Horsham High School, 899 Horsham Road in Horsham.
3. Donate monetary contributions, gift cards, turkeys, or hams to Hatboro-Horsham High School as part of Feed A Friend. Deadline for drop-off is Dec. 17.
4. Donate a gift (maximum cost $25) for Magical Mornings. For more details on age-appropriate gifts needed, etc., email Dave Thomas at firstname.lastname@example.org.