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Tips & Ideas

Tips & Ideas


  • Obtain the endorsement of your organization’s top management.
  • Invite co-workers or group members to a planning meeting.
  • If you expect to collect 300 lbs or more, request collection barrels and posters from the Food Bank to place in high-traffic areas.


  • Choose a catchy name or theme for your food drive.
  • Distribute posters, flyers or send an e-mail outlining the need and ways of participating.  Include the list of most needed items
  • Businesses can use payroll stuffers to ask employees to make cash donations. Every dollar donated to the Food Bank provides 3 meals.
  • Submit an announcement of the food drive to your local newspaper or your organization’s newsletter. 
  • Small group tours of the food bank can be arranged to learn more about the hunger problem and how we help.


  • Set a goal for how much food and how many dollars you want to collect, track the progress, and announce final results.
  • Create a display board to show hunger statistics, track progress, etc.
  • Create challenges between departments, classes, etc.  For instance, a winning department could get a free pizza party.
  • Offer incentives such as gift certificates, casual dress days or a special parking spot for the top contributor.
  • Schedule a fun kick-off event to create interest in the food drive.  For example, hold an office party in which admission is a food or cash donation to the drive.
  • Hold a raffle in which a food or cash donation to the drive buys a raffle ticket.  Give away some creative incentive.


  • Have food assigned to a specific day: macaroni Monday, Tuna Tuesday.  Let co-workers know a day or two ahead of time.
  • Pick one food item and collect, collect, collect- Example:  Peanut Butter, soups and canned Fruit.
  • Take pictures of people putting food in bins. Post them in your department with a reminder to bring food.
  • Do lunch time/lunch room games. Build a canned castle, a cereal maze, etc. from food collected by employees.
  • A tisket, a tasket.  Everyone brings a food item to work and drops it off at the door of a co-worker with a note, “this is my food drive donation in honor of you”. The worker puts the donation in the bin and posts the note on the bulletin board. See how filled up the board gets.
  • Guess what’s in the food box contest-a box of groceries in placed in a convenient location. Folks are able to guess what’s in the box. Whoever guesses the most items wins. Give a goofy trinket for a prize like a kazoo or party store item.
  • Have an ethnic day. Italian day. Asian day. Everyone brings food common to that culture.

To promote a healthy diet, whenever possible we encourage donations of foods that are reduced in sodium, sugar, or fat and contain no trans fatty acids.

Hungry? Find Food

Second Harvest Food Bank works with partner agencies to distribute food throughout Orange County. Find an agency near you that can help.

        Get Help        

Food Drive Information

Register your food drive

Download Food Drive Kit
(Adobe PDF format)

Still have questions? Contact us:
Ph:  (949) 653-2900 | Fax: (949) 653-0700
Ask for Community Relations Coordinator