Starting next week, United Way of Marshall County will begin collecting non-perishable food items for its annual holiday food drive.
Raquel Zavaleta, marketing and community impact director for United Way of Marshall County, says the collection will take on a different format this year due to the pandemic.
"Every year we do it, it always lasts a day. But this year, we did it a little differently because we didn't want to expose our volunteers to be in close contact with people. So, this year, we said we're going to put boxes in the stores and the people can come by, leave the food there and then, we'll pick up the food," Zavaleta said.
Food boxes will be in several locations throughout Marshall County for residents to place donations through Dec. 31.
The organization expects a higher need for food donations this holiday season based on what they’ve been seeing since March.
"We've already seen that the need is much higher this year. In fact, when the whole pandemic started, United Way was one of the first to start an emergency community fund and we've been helping a lot of people with food, paying rent, paying bills," Zavaleta said.
United Way is also running its annual Small Business Blitz event through Nov. 10, which allows entrepreneurs to promote their small businesses while giving back to the community.
Zavaleta says it is because of the generosity of the community that they can continue helping those in need.
"Thanks to the support of the community and their donations, we can continue to do everything we do for the community," Zavaleta said.
Here are the drop-off locations for non-perishable food items: Albertville Foodland, Boaz Foodland, Douglas Food Valu, Grant Dennis Foodland, Arab Foodland, Guntersville Foodland, Arab Warehouse Discount Grocery, Albertville Chamber of Commerce and Arab Chamber of Commerce.
For more information, visit United Way of Marshall County’s Facebook page.