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UC San Diego Helps Soaring Number of Community Members Suffering from Hunger

Oct. 6, 2010

By Christine Clark

As a result of the difficult economic climate, hunger is at an all time high in San Diego. At the University of California, San Diego, students, staff and faculty are doing their part to help feed the community by participating in the Colleges Rock Hunger contest Oct. 6 – 22, hosted by the San Diego Food Bank. The nonprofit agency handed out 15.3 million pounds of food this past fiscal year, a 56 percent increase from the 9.1 million pounds two years earlier. According to the Center on Hunger and Poverty, today over five million Californians are hungry or live in fear of hunger.
            
Approximately 74,000 college students from UC San Diego, California State University San Marcos (CSUSM), San Diego State University (SDSU) and the University of San Diego (USD) are competing in the contest to meet the huge increase in demand for food from community members affected by layoffs, bankruptcies and other economic woes. Their combined donations will be the first official contribution to the 2010 San Diego Food Bank Holiday Food Drive. This is the third year that the Hard Rock Hotel San Diego has sponsored the drive.
            
This is a great opportunity for UC San Diego to showcase our dedication to service,” said Chancellor Marye Anne Fox. “Washington Monthly ranks UC San Diego the number one university in the nation based on UC San Diego’s positive impact on our country.  The Colleges Rock Hunger contest allows our campus community to visibly show our unwavering commitment to our community and to public service that benefits the health and well-being of our region.”
            
There will be more than 30 bins at various locations on campus where students, faculty, staff and members of the public can drop off their canned goods. Students will also be collecting monetary donations on the campus’ Library Walk Oct. 11 – Oct. 15. In addition, students can make donations on their cell phones by texting SDFOOD UCSD to 20222 and online at: http://vad.aidmatrix.org/vadxml.cfm?driveid=4545.
           
“A $1 donation is equivalent to three meals for a needy family,” said Krista Mays, sustainability manager for Housing Dining and Hospitality at UC San Diego. “This contest is a great way for UC San Diego to show its heart to the San Diego community.”
            
On Oct. 13 and 21, UC San Diego’s shuttle riders can drop off their donations as they leave campus shuttles at the Mandeville and Gilman shuttle stops.
            
Anyone who helps to collect food may log those donated hours with the Volunteer50: Chancellor’s Call to Service program. Fox’s campaign encourages all members of the UC San Diego community to perform at least 50 hours of volunteer service during the anniversary celebration. In addition to supporting the university’s mission of service, Volunteer50 will showcase the widespread and diverse contributions of the university’s faculty, staff, students and alumni.
            
Established in 1977, the San Diego Food Bank is a critical component to the welfare of San Diego County, providing food to people in need, advocating for the hungry and educating the public about hunger-related issues. Through a combination of government programs and partnerships with over 350 San Diego County nonprofit charities, the Food Bank acts as a central repository and distribution point for government and donated food. Click here for more information on the contest.

 

About UC San Diego
Fifty years ago, the founders of the University of California, San Diego had one criterion for the campus: It must be distinctive.  Since then, UC San Diego has achieved the extraordinary in education, research and innovation.  Sixteen Nobel laureates have taught on campus; our stellar faculty members have been awarded Fields Medals, Pulitzer Prizes, McArthur Fellowships and many other honors.  UC San Diego—recognized as one of the top ten public universities by U.S. News & World Report and named by the Washington Monthly as number one in the nation in rankings measuring “what colleges are doing for the country”—is widely acknowledged for its local impact, national influence and global reach.  Join us in celebrating 50 years of visionaries, innovators and overachievers.  Visit www.50th.ucsd.edu for more information.

Media Contact: Christine Clark or (858) 534-7618


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