Trucks bringing food for Million Meals for Haiti

Trucks bringing food for Million Meals for Haiti

CHAMPAIGN – Trucks bearing food for this weekend's Million Meals for Haiti event rolled into town Tuesday morning, delivering pallets stacked with soy and rice.

The first load arrived at the former Hobby Lobby on Glenn Park Drive about 7:30 a.m., and more trucks were expected throughout the day. A banner proclaiming "One Million Meals for Haiti" also adorns the vacant store's exterior.

"It's happening," said Kris Fuqua, commander of the Salvation Army of Champaign County, which is coordinating the event.

About 8,000 volunteers are being recruited to package 1 million meals for victims of Haiti's earthquake on Saturday and Sunday. The Salvation Army is teaming with Numana Inc. and the Interfaith in Action student group at the University of Illinois on the project.

Kansas-based Numana produces dry nonperishable meals for distribution to starving people worldwide, delivering them in bulk to cities across the country where volunteers package the food into family-size packets for shipment to Haiti.

Almost 2,800 volunteers have registered so far, according to Jerry Geren, volunteer coordinator for the event. Even if the total falls short of 8,000, "we're just going to plunge ahead and do it," Fuqua said. "It's going to happen."

The event is scheduled for 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday and 1 to 6 p.m. Sunday. Volunteers are asked to sign up for two-hour shifts.

You can register online or call the Millions Meals Telephone Hotline at 398-0428.

More in Wednesday's News-Gazette.

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