Ideas and Themes for Food Drives

The following are some suggestions for organizing your drive:

  • Collect food outside of a grocery store.
  • Establish a collection point in a central location at your workplace, business, or your organization’s headquarters, such as the reception area, cafeteria, break room, waiting room, or checkout counter.
  • Hold a food drive at your swim club, local Y, summer camp, or as part of a sports event.
  • Work with your community leaders to hold a food drive in conjunction with a town street festival or concert.
  • Throw a BBQ or block party and collect food.
  • Ask for food as “admission” to a company or school event.
  • Exchange a reward for a donation – allow employees/students to dress casual, etc.
  • Ask for food donations in lieu of gifts at your next special event. Establish a theme that fits with the type of gathering.

The following are some ideas for themes for your food drive:

  • Designate theme days, such as Macaroni Monday (plain pasta and macaroni & cheese), Tuna or Tomato Tuesday (canned tuna or canned vegetables), Wheaties Wednesday (cereals), Thirsty Thursday (juice and Parmalat milk) and Fruity Friday (canned fruit).
  • Talk to your local library about doing a “Food for Fines” program, where they accept canned goods in lieu of overdue book fines. Or see if they can tie a “Read to Feed” program into their reading clubs, where they ask participants to bring food for each book they read.
  • Tie your drive in with a holiday.
  • Run a Brown Bag Buddy drive during the summer to collect breakfast and lunch items for children who normally receive these meals through a school program.
  • Create a slogan and/or theme that relates to your organization or business, such as “Make Every Bean Count” – a canned beans drive at an accounting firm.

The following are some ideas for how to generate excitement about your food drive:

  • Be creative with collection containers – playpens for collecting baby items, fill a car for a Food DRIVE, etc.
  • Set creative goals – collect food to reach a certain height or weight, or to fill a specific container or room.
  • Create competitions – department against department, class against class, team against team.
  • Set up a calendar where you suggest a specific item for people to set aside each day of the drive, and then bring to the collection point at the end.