Throughout the past few weeks, several groups of PSEG Long Island employee-volunteers, including Karl Mueller and Lai Chu of Jericho, have been hard at work at Island Harvest’s food bank for food collection and distribution in Hauppauge. The Jericho duo worked with dozens of PSEG employees to sort through roughly 500,000 pounds of food donated by Long Islanders for distribution to families in need. This exceptional donation was collected by letter carriers as part of its 27th annual Stamp Out Hunger campaign.
“I have volunteered at Island Harvest with my team of communication technicians several times,” Chu said. “It is rewarding to bond with my coworkers outside of the workplace and help our neighbors on Long Island to combat hunger. I am proud to work for a company that gives us time to volunteer and give back to our community.”
Stamp Out Hunger is an initiative of the National Association of Letter Carriers. Each year in late May, U.S. Postal Service employees collect donated non-perishable food items at homes along their routes. The collected food is donated to area food banks, like Island Harvest, and packed up for area families in need. Without volunteers, like those from PSEG Long Island, the task would be daunting.
“Dozens of PSEG Long Island employees each year volunteer their time at Island Harvest Food Bank,” Suzanne Brienza, PSEG Long Island director of customer experience and utility marketing, said in a statement. “This volunteer opportunity was even more special because our employees were helping their neighbors on Long Island, while participating in a national event to fight hunger.”
PSEG Long Island employees routinely volunteer their time to support a variety of Island Harvest’s events and activities like various sort and pack opportunities, as well as staffing its annual turkey drive, tending the Healthy Harvest Farm and rescuing good, edible food at restaurants and stores and delivering it to food pantries and kitchens.
“It feels good to volunteer my time to help people in our communities who need it,” Mueller, a PSEG Long Island senior distribution supervisor and Jericho resident, said. “I appreciate PSEG Long Island for promoting community service opportunities and inspiring us to volunteer. It really makes for a fulfilling experience.”
Additionally, Chu took part in the Marie Kondo Challenge to celebrate the Lunar New Year. Local employees were challenged to clean out unneeded, unwanted items and clothing from their homes. The Lunar New Year spring cleaning is a tradition in some Asian cultures that symbolizes a fresh start to a prosperous new year.
Island Harvest, created in 1992 by Linda Breitstone, sets out on a daily mission “to end hunger and reduce food waste on Long Island.”
The hunger relief group said this is the largest donation they’ve received from the Stamp Out Hunger collection event. For more information on Stamp Out Hunger, visit www.nalc.org/community-service/food-drive. For more information on Island Harvest, visit www.islandharvest.org.
PSEG Long Island gives back to the people and communities it serves by actively supporting hundreds of local charity events each year through the company’s Community Partnership Program. Last year, PSEG Long Island employees logged 26,000 service hours volunteering at 1,145 fundraising and community events to support more than 400 organizations. For more information on how PSEG Long Island supports the communities it serves, visit www.psegliny.com/page.cfm/Community.
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