Residents hold food drop-off as part of National Service Day | News, Sports,


NILES — Like many people, Helene Seifert of Warren is disillusioned by today’s divisive political climate and lack of civility in much public discourse, but she decided to do something to counteract those negative forces — one bag at a time.

“I just really think we all need to look out for each other, especially in this time,” Seifert said in explaining the underlying reason she donated several bags of food during a drive-up food drop-off event Saturday afternoon behind the Pinetree Plaza on Youngstown-Warren Road.

“It feels good to reach out to my fellow human beings.”

Hosting the two-hour gathering were the Trumbull County Democratic Party, the Mahoning / Trumbull Democratic Women’s Caucus, the Trumbull County Federated Democratic Women’s Club, the Trumbull County Young Democrats and various local elected officials.

The drop-off also was in conjunction with the nonpartisan National Day of Service to celebrate and honor the life and legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., who would have celebrated his 92nd birthday Friday. Events nationwide were to focus on COVID-19 relief efforts, as well as tackling poverty, racial injustices, hunger, mental health, homelessness, educational disparities and other challenges, the effects of which many say the pandemic have exacerbated.

Seifert, who retired in 2011 after having worked 18 years at the Trumbull County Courthouse, donated bags containing peanut butter and jelly, vegetables, onions and other items.

“We need to care more about each other,” said Seifert, who added she plans to watch President-elect Joe Biden’s inauguration at noon Wednesday.

About 20 minutes after the donation drive began, a steady stream of vehicles arrived to drop off bags of food and toiletries. It wasn’t long before two trucks began to be filled with boxes of items such as dry soup cups, spaghetti, tomato sauce, cereal, bottled water, snack products, vegetables, brownie mix, boxes of mashed potatoes and a variety of canned goods.

Toiletries and other donations included toothpaste, sticks of deodorant and rolls of paper towels.

The food will be donated to the Warren Family Mission and the toiletries will go to Someplace Safe, a Warren-based shelter for victims of domestic violence and other types of abuse, organizers noted.

Tommy Summers, the Trumbull County Young Democrats’ president, said Saturday’s donation drive also was inspired by Biden’s call for people to give back to their communities. In addition, King’s legacy was a contributing factor, he added.

“The Trumbull County Democrats are happy to serve their community,” partly by assisting those who are struggling with the continuing health crisis, said Summers, who added he knows people who have been furloughed from their jobs because of it.

Karen Zehr of the Trumbull County…

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