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Published October 02, 2012, 10:29 AM

Areavoices: Cooperative food drive to benefit the LaMoure and Sargent County food pantries

As part of the month-long celebration of International Year of Cooperatives, Dakota Valley Electric is organizing a food drive to benefit the LaMoure and Sargent County food pantries.

By: Dakota Valley News blog, INFORUM

I visited with a woman once who was waiting for services at the Salvation Army in Jamestown. With her was one of her children, a young girl in a wheelchair. The girl’s father had recently died, leaving the child without insurance, and quite obviously, the girl had major medial needs. The mother was working, but couldn’t afford both the hospital bills and food for the table.

That family is one of the many examples of hard-working people who hesitate to ask for help, but swallow their pride when children are in need.

As part of the month-long celebration of International Year of Cooperatives, Dakota Valley Electric is organizing a food drive to benefit the LaMoure and Sargent County food pantries.

Of the 280,000 or so households in North Dakota, more than 25,000 received public assistance income or food stamps in the past 12 months, according to 2010 census data. That includes about 70 households in LaMoure County and about 130 households in Sargent County.

We’re quick to blame the poor sometimes: why aren’t they working? Are they lazy? But of the food stamp recipients, almost half have earned income/jobs, according to the Department of Health and Human Services. Of course, just because a family is on food stamps doesn’t mean they require assistance from the food pantry and just because a family requires temporary assistance from a food pantry doesn’t mean they qualify for food stamps. But the statistics show that the need is real, even in our tight-knit, rural communities.

So Dakota Valley Electric is pleased to celebrate the International Year of Cooperatives by reaching out to the communities we serve. But we need your help. Bring nonperishable items into our Edgeley or Milnor offices as well as the Edgeley Food Center and Milnor Jack & Jill by Nov. 1 and we will donate them to the LaMoure and Sargent County food pantries. According to Brenda at the Sargent County Food Pantry in Forman, toilet paper and peanut butter are two of the most needed items, followed by dry pasta and cans of soup. Thanks in advance for all your help!

For more information, please call us at 1-800-342-4671.

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