BEAT BAMA: Food Drive To Run Until Nov. 18

The first day of the drive, the team set up a dunk tank. Miss Auburn, the Involvement Office president and Wray all took a turn (or several turns) getting dunked. PHOTOS CONTRIBUTED TO THE OBSERVER


There is still time to donate to the Beat Bama Food Drive.

The annual food drive competition between the two schools began in 1994. Each year, the schools, and their surrounding communities, compete to collect food and funds. The food raised by the University of Alabama benefits the West Alabama Food Bank, while Auburn’s benefits the Food Bank of East Alabama.

Last year, Auburn collected 259,160 pounds of food. The University of Alabama won with 291,047 pounds of food.

The 2021 drive kicked off on Oct. 1 and will last through Nov. 18.

“That’s basically the whole premise of it,” said Jack Wray, president of the drive. “Just everyone coming together and bringing on the SEC rivalry to do something good.”

Before Oct. 1 the Beat Bama Food Drive Team was focused on education, Wray said.

“When people talk about food insecurity, they don’t really know what it exactly means,” he said. “You know, they think it’s related to hunger, which it is. But, it’s not exactly hunger. Food insecurity is more about the inability to gain proper access to food. So, not knowing where your next meal is coming from.”

Another tactic the Beat Bama Food Drive used to raise awareness and funds was the neighborhood drive, he said.

“We drop brown paper bags off with our logo in the community and then on Sunday we come and pick them back up and ask the community partners to fill them, like around houses and neighborhoods in the community,” he said. “… This community in Auburn is possibly the most close-knit that I’ve ever been a part of.”

Wray said that where he grew up, in Atlanta, poverty and homelessness were prevalent everywhere. But in Auburn, food insecurity looks different.

“It doesn’t present itself like that, you can know someone for a decade and not know they were struggling with food insecurity,” he said.

There are several ways to donate to help Auburn beat Alabama this year.

Firstly, donations are accepted through the Venmo (@aubbfd), the givpol ( or  a check made out to the Food Bank of East Alabama. Cash and actual canned donations are also accepted.

There are barrels around town where physical donations can be dropped off. Locations include:

– Winn-Dixie, Auburn

– Winn-Dixie, Opelika

– Kroger, Auburn

– Kroger, Opelika

– Food Bank of East Alabama, Auburn

– Community Market, Opelika

– Locations around campus.

“Donated food will be used to help the food bank’s senior programs, soup kitchens, emergency food pantries, missions and rehabilitation centers that are served by the Food Bank of East Alabama and the West Alabama Food Bank,” said a press release from the Food Bank of East Alabama.

The donations allow some families to eat for Thanksgiving and Christmas, the release said.

“The real winners of this annual competition are the hungry families fed through the food bank network,” the release said. “… One in five Alabama residents are considered food insecure. For many, visits to the food pantry are no longer one-time emergency stops, but a regular part of the monthly routine to support their families.”


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here