People in the Neepawa area shouldn't be going hungry any time soon. And that's in part thanks to a joint effort from Farm Credit Canada (FCC) and area residents joining together to collect 7,676.28 pounds of food for FCC's annual Drive Away Hunger campaign held last week, from Oct. 15-19. Eight schools, three businesses, two colonies, individuals and a community group all pitched in collecting the food donations. “This year's response was great,” FCC's Susan Szucki said, pointing out last year's total was 5,650 lbs.; more than 2,000 lbs. less than this year's total. “I think as we keep doing this drive every year we keep getting more interest as more people know about it, and we're happy to have been a part of ensuring people in Neepawa and area have the food they need this winter.” The food was collected by FCC and taken to the local food bank at the Salvation Army, overflowing the back room at the building. The Drive Away Hunger initiative has become one of the food bank's major food drives for the year and supports both general needs as well as the Christmas hampers given out. There were also several monetary donations made that will go towards the Christmas hampers and other community programs. “I'm speechless from the outpouring of support, especially from the schools again this year,” Salvation Army's Amanda Naughton-Gale said. “It's important to me to see the students doing this because they are practicing the idea of giving back to the community.” Note: NACI students will be continuing that support of the Salvation Army on Halloween night by collecting non-expired, non-perishable food items and lightly used jeans while trick-or-treating.