Annual Meal Plan/Flexi Dollar Food Drive

To: UCSC Students

From: Student Services on behalf of the Student Volunteer Center

Hello Slugs! My name is Will Brotherson and I am the Program Director for the Student Volunteer Center. I want to give you some information on our annual Meal Plan/Flexi Dollar Food Drive. Second Harvest gathered hunger statistics in 2010 for Santa Cruz & San Benito counties and compared the numbers to 2006. The following are some of the highlights from this study:

• 45% of those served by the food bank are children. An increase of 6% from 2006.
• The total number of unique individuals that received emergency food assistance from Second Harvest each week went up by over 5,000 people since 2006.
• 1 in every 3 households have a monthly income of less than $500.
• More than 10% of pantries, 16% of kitchens and over 1/3rd of all shelters were forced to turn away hungry families in 2010 due to a lack of food.
• Kitchens estimate that they needed, at least, an additional 30 meals a week.

To combat these staggering statistics,the Student Volunteer Center hosts the Meal Plan and Flexi Dollar Drive in conjunction with UC Santa Cruz Dining. UCSC students have the opportunity to donate their remaining meals and flexi dollars to the Second Harvest Food Bank, an organization that then uses these donations to purchase food for the hungry in the Santa Cruz Community. Starting right now, you can donate any unused meals you have (up to 10) and any unused Flexi Dollars you have (up to $25) on our website at

Because of the in-kind donations and the access to cheap food that Second Harvest has, every 25 cents that you donate will be able to provide one hungry person with one meal. So even if you only have one guest meal left, please consider donating it. You'll be providing up to 10 meals for each one you donate! This will go a long way in ensuring that no one in our community goes hungry for the holidays.

We appreciate your help in making this year's drive as successful as possible!

For more information on how Second Harvest Food Bank operates, check out this instructional video: