The University of Virginia is going head-to-head against Old Dominion University, not only in the Governor’s Holiday Hoops Classic on Dec. 22, but also in a food drive benefitting Virginia’s food banks.
U.Va. President Teresa A. Sullivan is co-chairing the drive with ODU President John R. Broderick.
"During the holiday season, we want to reach out to those who are in need of assistance," Sullivan said. “The food drive gives us a great opportunity to help our friends and neighbors, while the Holiday Hoops Classic lets us enjoy some good basketball at the same time. I'm grateful to Governor McDonnell for leading this effort."
The U.Va. drive will support the Blue Ridge Area Food Bank. Beginning Nov. 15, U.Va.’s Community Relations office will partner with the Department of Athletics and the Office of the Vice President and Chief Student Affairs Officer to collect donations on Grounds and online. The food bank will track all contributions and calculate the final amount.
The Blue Ridge Area Food Bank serves more than 145,000 people, according to a 2010 Hunger Study. As a member of the Virginia Federation of Food Banks, which serves more than 900,000 Virginians, the BRAFB hopes to fill the gap created by food insecurity.
“More than 26,000 people in Charlottesville and the surrounding counties seek our help each month, and the need has grown 16 percent over last year,” said Larry Zippin, CEO of the Blue Ridge Area Food Bank. “A win for U.Va. will be a big win for the hungry.”
This food drive runs concurrently with the Commonwealth of Virginia Campaign, the annual effort that provides state employees a convenient way to support the charities of their choice. Through the CVC, U.Va. employees have provided substantial funding for area food banks, donating more than $50,000 last year alone. This year, CVC donations to the food bank will also count towards the Holiday Hoops total. To donate through the CVC, visit the Pledge Online page of the website or submit a pledge using your red envelope. The BRAFB’s CVC number is 3608.
Online donations can also be made using the “Give Now” button on the Community Relations website. Select or enter the amount of the desired gift and provide payment information. A receipt from the BRAFB is forwarded upon completion.
Text2Give is another easy way to donate. Text FEEDBR UVA to 85944. A $10 fee will be donated to the food bank through an individual cell phone bill. Phones billed as part of a family plan are not eligible. U.Va. Athletics will share Text2Give information at home athletic events and through weekly e-mails.
Individuals wishing to donate nonperishable food items can do so at several locations on Grounds including:
- 400 Ray C. Hunt Drive
- Bice House
- Claude Moore Health Sciences Library
- Courts & Commerce at the U.Va. Law School
- Crossroads at O-Hill
- Lambeth Commons
- Leake Building – Facilities Management
- Madison House
- Piedmont Building at 2405 Ivy Road
- Rouss/Robertson Hall at the Commerce School
- Ruffner Hall
- U.Va. Bookstore
Some of the most needed items are canned tuna, boxed cereal and peanut butter.
The Governor’s Holiday Hoops Classic food drive ends Dec. 15. The winner of the competition will be announced before the men’s basketball game, featuring U.Va. and ODU at the Richmond Coliseum on Dec. 22.