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TSA donates food in ‘crazy times’

NAWILIWILI — Betty “BJ” Uegawa of the Transportation Security Administration said she never forgot the feeling of relief and joy when the Kaua‘i Independent Food Bank showed up with relief food when TSA was shut down due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The look of relief on the faces of the TSA employees receiving the food delivery was indescribable.

“The longtime employees never forget,” said Uegawa. “They spearheaded this food drive under the annual Feds Feed Families program. The TSA employees give what they can so others can experience the feeling of getting fed during this crazy time.”

The TSA crew, including Uegawa, Hope Burns, Lyle Stemo, Pualeilani Medeiros, Travis Medina and Levi Fabiana, delivered 579 pounds of collected food on Friday. They also helped the Kaua‘i Independent Food Bank unload the delivery and pack it for the warehouse.

Kelvin Moniz, KIFB executive director, expressed the food bank’s appreciation for the contribution, noting that despite the “crazy” times, KIFB continues to feed the people.

“We do emergency food distributions to families in need on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 9:30 a.m.,” Moniz said. “These food packages are not just pre-packaged amounts. We put food together to fit the family, whether it’s an individual or a family of five or more.”

Additionally, as the holidays draw closer, there is a greater demand for food as families think of the special Thanksgiving and holiday meals as well as not being hungry.

Uegawa said TSA traditionally does this annual Feds Feed Families drive and supplements the contributions with a second drive during the year.

This was not possible this year because of the “crazy times.”

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Dennis Fujimoto, staff writer and photographer, can be reached at 245-0453 or dfujimoto@thegardenisland.com.
Source: The Garden Island

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