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Clackamas County library patrons donat more than 12,100 pounds for local food banks

Libraries in Clackamas County (LINCC) recently wrapped up its Food for Fines drive, an event that lasted seven days and concluded April 14.

During National Library Week library patrons donated more than 12,100 pounds for local food banks during LINCC's fourth-annual countywide "Food for Fines" drive.

The event raises awareness of the need for food donations countywide. All of the donated food items went to food banks in the communities where they were collected.

Libraries waived $1 in overdue fines for every nonperishable food item that was donated, which resulted in the removal of more than $12,100 in fines from patron accounts.

Milwaukie's Ledding Library collected about 2,500 pounds of food this year during Food for Fines, beating last year's record of 2,479 pounds. As a result of these donations, a total of $2,276.28 in fines were waived. Other libraries in the county collected additional donations beyond what patrons needed to donate to have their fines waived.

"Our food bank was thrilled with the results of this year's food donations, and we beat our 2017 total by 25 pounds," said Nancy Wittig, Ledding Library circulation supervisor. "They are always looking for donations of soup, and our patrons provided a wealth of it."

Oregon City's drive waived $1,389 in fines, $1 for each nonperishable good donated. All of the donations collected during the drive went to the Pioneer Pantry and Oregon City's H.O.P.E food pantries.

Oregon City Public Library Director Maureen Cole said this program is a great way for people to help the community and get food into the hands of those in need.

Oregon City High School's Pioneer Pantry provides food for weekends and breaks to homeless and food insecure students in the district.

H.O.P.E., Helping Other People Eat, is a food pantry providing emergency food baskets for people in need in the Oregon City area, including Gladstone and West Linn.

A second opportunity to pay off library fines is June 17-23 when the OC Library hosts half-off fines for all patrons with overdue accounts in honor of the library's 105th anniversary.

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