Top the Truck food drive benefits Foodshelf

PUTNEY — Each September, the Putney Foodshelf's Top the Truck food drive during Hunger Action Month brings in donations of both food and money that last for about two months. It's an important part of the organization's fundraising and food procurement.

This year, the drive will take place from Sept. 20 to 26 at the Putney Food Co-op and the Putney General Store.

Because of COVID-19, the Foodshelf board of directors said in a news release that it reinvented Top the Truck to limit person-to-person contact.

People can purchase cases of food at a bulk rate at the registers of either store as well as online. At the General Store, people will also be able to buy single items for the donation basket.

Since the COVID-19 pandemic started, Putney Foodshelf has been serving approximately 100 households per week: 50 to 56 families who come to the Saturday drive-up open hours, 25 to 29 families via home delivery, and 20 to 25 families through the Food4Kids program.

Putney Foodshelf primarily serves Putney, Dummerston, Brattleboro, and Westminster, but no one is turned away. The organization is committed to being open for those in need.

When the pandemic began, the organization instituted a drive-up model. During open hours (Saturdays from 9 to 11 a.m.), shoppers remain in their cars. Volunteers greet each car, determine what is needed.

Each family is offered a bag of shelf-stable foods, a bag of fresh produce, and a bag of meat, milk, and eggs.

Putney Foodshelf is in direct communication with and is collaborating with town officials, Putney Central School, Putney Community Cares, Putney Mutual Aid, Dummerston Cares, Hunger Council of the Windham Region, Vermont Foodbank, and other organizations to collaborate as the situation evolves.

For further information or to donate, visit or call 802-387-8551 and leave a message.

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