Annual On-Campus Can Drive doubles expected donations post-Hurricane Ida

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Nicholls State University’s Annual Can Drive just occurred. The drive was held from Nov. 1 through Nov. 9. The aim of the drive was to collect and donate canned food to local food banks.

The Nicholl’s Can Drive began in the Department of Art in 2012.

Associate Professor of Art and Nicholls Can Chairman for the past four years, Michael Williams, stated, “It was made here in the Department of Art; my former department head Jean Donegan, who is now Dean of the College of Liberal Arts, came up with this project as a way for us to give back to the community and have community involvement from Nicholls directly to the community.”

This year, we have the effects of Hurricane Ida still looming around, while last year the drive was held during the pandemic.

“Last year was Covid, so we did it all online; so, last year was a very small turn out, like maybe about 7,000 items which we met our goal which was great. This year we’re looking at something like 14,000 items,” Williams said.

The donation goal is usually about 7,000 cans with students, faculty and staff each donating one can a piece.

“Every year we start out with a simple goal, if every faculty, student and staff were to bring in a canned item, we would have about 7,000 or so items,” Williams said.

During the 2021 Can Drive, the Nicholls community collected a grand total of 13,357 items with 9,017 cans and 4,340 monetary donations. 

The monetary donations are very useful to the food banks because they can get the items that they need but that they may not have yet received.

The drive was held campus wide with faculty and staff urging students to donate if they were able. 

According to the Washington Post, 26 million Americans do not have enough to eat. 16% of households with children reported that they did not have enough food to eat in the last week, and 12% of overall households in the United States do not have enough food.

According to Feeding America, one in six people face hunger in Louisiana, and one in four children face hunger in Louisiana. 

Hunger will always be an issue, but we can do what we can to help our community by donating and volunteering. If you missed this drive, you can still donate to a plethora of food banks in the Bayou Region, or you could wait until the next on-campus drive. The drive is usually held every year before Thanksgiving.

For information on how you can donate to the next can drive, contact Michael Williams at [email protected]