By Mike Schuh

BALTIMORE (WJZ)—Those who get donated food into the hands of the needy get discouraged this time every year.

As Mike Schuh reports, the United Way is stepping in to ask for help.

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Not having enough food in the house is widespread.

“So we operate a call center at United Way, and we’ve been getting an increasing amount of calls about food,” said Mark Furst, United Way of Central Maryland.

That’s why the United Way is working with all of the governments in our area to collect 25 tons of food.  Not just any food, but healthy food.

“As the healthy food ambassador, I am so proud to announce our partnership with our elected officials who have stepped up to the plate,” said Molly Shattuck, healthy food ambassador.

All of the area’s political leaders are onboard.

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“This is a partnership,” said Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake. “We know that hunger knows no geographic or political boundaries. This is about a regional effort to make sure that families in need have the resources they need.”

Timing is crucial, as all that collected during the holidays is now gone.

“The problem occurs in the off-season, but hunger doesn’t have an offseason,” Furst said.

Filling three big trailers, or six smaller ones, is the goal.

Everyone is asked to give.

“Firehouses, Coldwell Banker offices, in fact you can leave a healthy bag of food at your mailboxes next Saturday, May 11, and we’ll make sure that it gets in the hands of people who need it,” Furst said.

In addition to those postal pickups, there are fire halls and libraries, as well as the two Santoni’s and two Eddie’s locations.

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The week of donations starts Friday and runs through May 11.