February 8, 2021

SUNY Empire State College to Hold Soup Drive Amid Increased Need for Aid

Contactless Drives Scheduled in Rochester, Saratoga Springs, and Selden Will Benefit Community Organizations

Date and Time: Wednesday, February 17 at 11 a.m.


(SARATOGA SPRINGS, NEW YORK – February 8, 2021) SUNY Empire State College will host three concurrent soup drives at its Rochester, Saratoga Springs, and Selden campuses to support community shelters and food pantries committed to serving those in need.

On Wednesday, February 17, between 11 a.m. and 3 p.m., volunteers at the three locations will accept all varieties of canned soup and can openers. Donors are asked to simply drive up, and a volunteer — masked and adhering to social distancing guidelines — will collect gifts, while the driver remains in their vehicle. Donations made at the following SUNY Empire locations will benefit the respective organizations:

  • 111-113 West Ave., Saratoga Springs 
    • LifeWorks Community Action, a nonprofit organization founded in 1965 that works to alleviate poverty in Saratoga County and the North Country.

  • 680 Westfall Road, Rochester 
    • Dimitri House, offering food, services, and shelter to those in the Rochester area.  

  • 407 College Road, Selden
    • Lighthouse Mission, a Bellport-based organization committed to feeding those in need, while empowering people to overcome poverty.
    • Branches Long Island, a community group with more than 4,000 members dedicated to ensuring individuals, families, and children have access to basic necessities.

The pandemic, mass job loss, and the resulting recession have worsened the food crisis not only here in New York state, but across the country. Prior to COVID-19, more than 40 million Americans – just over 1 in 10 New York households – struggled with food insecurity. Regional food banks have experienced a 58 percent increase in food demands for struggling families, and that number continues to grow as food pantries and shelters struggle to keep up with increased need.

“The pandemic has increased the number of our neighbors experiencing food and housing insecurity,” said SUNY Empire State College Officer in Charge Nathan Gonyea. “SUNY Empire is grateful to collaborate with LifeWorks Community Action, Dimitri House, and Lighthouse Mission. Their continued commitment to ensuring food and services find their way to those who need it most is inspiring. We hope this drive will help them continue to help our neighbors.”

Next week’s drive is the SUNY Empire’s fourth in as many months. Since November, the college held food, toy, and pet drives across the state.

About SUNY Empire State College  

SUNY Empire State College educates 16,000 students per year in person, online, and through a blend of both, at locations in every region of New York and at eight international sites worldwide. Together with one of SUNY Empire’s 800 faculty mentors, each student designs their own individualized pathway to a college degree that accommodates their schedule and awards credit for prior college-level learning. SUNY Empire awards more than 3,000 degrees annually and 94 percent of graduates stay in New York state. Today, more than 91,000 SUNY Empire alumni are entrepreneurs, veterans, and active members of the military, professional athletes, teachers, medical professionals, and leaders in their field, as well as in their communities. To learn more, visit www.esc.edu and follow the college on social media @SUNYEmpire.