Daily Independent (Ashland, KY)


July 3, 2013

One feeds many

Teen’s Cans for a Cause collects 4,740 pounds of food

ASHLAND — Skeptics thought Aaron Hannah was embarking on “mission impossible” when he single-handedly launched Cans for a Cause, a project that he hoped would collect thousands of pounds of nonperishable food that River Cities Harvest would distribute to nonprofit agencies that feed the hungry. After all, Hannah, just 19 and a 2012 graduate of Raceland-Worthington High School, was planning to conduct his food drive in Ashland, a city where he had never lived and was not well known.

But those who doubted the drive would generate much food do not know Aaron Hannah. The Rev. Bob Sweeney, associate pastor of South Ashland United Metodist Church, said Hannah is one of those people, who “if he takes on something, he will see it through even if other people don’t get behind him. He doesn’t get discouraged and give up.”

Sweeney first met Hannah when he was pastor of Grace United Methodist Church in Raceland. Since Hannah was not familiar with Ashland’s neighborhoods, he asked Sweeney to help him choose where to center his food drive.

The drive was modeled after one Hannah had helped with in Berea, where he is a Bonner Scholar at Berea College. He left grocery sacks on the front porches of more than a thousand homes on June 20 and returned on June 28 in hopes of finding many of those bags filled food.

So how did it go? Well, at last count Cans for a Cause had collected 4,740.8 pounds of canned goods, dry mixes, peanut butter and other non-perishable foods. Put another way, that’s 740 pounds more than two tons.

Although Hannah said he felt good about the effort, he is already thinking about how he can do it better next year. 

“It was the first year, of course, we were going to hit a few bumps,” Hannah said. “I was very, very tired but I was very happy and satisfied to see River Cities Harvest get all this food ... and to know a 19-year-old kid can make a difference.”

Indeed he can. Hannah had help from friends and residents of the Ramey-Estep Home in collecting the food, but Cans for a Cause was essentially his own project. Net summer he hopes to have at lest twice as many grocery sacks to distribute and expand into neighborhoods in Russell, Flatwoods, Ironton and other communities.

River Cities Harvest director Terri Clark said the group’s supply of non-perishable goods was down to three cans before Hannah’s cans and boxes started coming in. “We’re absolutely thrilled Aaron had the vision to do this type of food drive,” Clark said, adding her appreciation for volunteers from the community as well as workers from the Ramey-Estep Home who helped collect, sort and weigh the foods.

Anyone who thinks all teenagers are lazy and self-centered needs to meet Aaron Hannah. He’s mature, outgoing and willing to work hard to accomplish his goals. He represents the best of today’s young people. We commend him for his efforts.

And, speaking of food drives, the Ashland Breakfast Kiwanis Club will be at the riverfront tonight collecting food and money for River Cities Harvest. All food and donations help feed the hungry. This is the 19th consecutive year the club has done this project. 

Text Only
  • Positive trend

    For those adults who have a low opinion of American teenagers, Uncle Sam’s latest study of worrisome behavior among teens provides some good news: Teens are smoking less, drinking less and fighting less. Most forms of drug use, weapons use and risky sex also are declining — and have been since 1991, the year the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention first started surveying teens about  their behavior.

    July 24, 2014

  • Research's value

    In pushing for a higher education reform bill in the late 1990s, former Gov. Paul Patton set an ambitious goal of having the University of Kentucky become a Top 20 research university by 2020. UK has yet to accomplish that goal, but UK and the University of Louisville both have made great advances in research in recent years.

    July 24, 2014

  • Deadline is near

    People with Kentucky driver’s licenses may soon be required to show a passport or some other accepted form of federal identification to enter “restricted” or “semi-restricted” areas of federal facilities, including federal courthouses, military bases, federal prisons and a wide range of other federal offices.

    July 23, 2014

  • Issue is safety

    The Kentucky High School Athletic Association’s Board of Control has recommended softball  “players at first base, third base and pitcher utilize the permissive requirement in the playing rules and wear face/head protection.”

    July 23, 2014

  • More difficult

    In a state like Kentucky with the number of adults who have not graduated from high school is much higher than the national average, undereducated adults have been encouraged to earn high-school equivalency degrees by studying for, taking and passing the General Educational Development (GED) test.

    May 22, 2014

  • Primary election sends messages

    The voters — or at least the minority who took the time to go to the polls Tuesday — have spoken, with Boyd County voters sending mixed messages in the county-wide races that gathered the most attention.

    May 21, 2014

  • Click it or Ticket

    "Click it or Ticket” is a phrase used so often in recent years most of us hardly give it a thought.

    May 21, 2014

  • Top trooper

    Thumbs up to Trooper First Class Shane Goodall of Flatwoods for being named 2013 Trooper of the Year for Kentucky.

    May 20, 2014

  • 05/18/2014 — This Week in the Tri-State

    Local news

    May 18, 2014

  • 0518greene.jpeg Greene-Lounsberry

    John and Eva Greene of Greenup are proud to announce the engagement of their daughter, Stacey Nicole Greene, to Jonathan Wesley Lounsberry.

    May 18, 2014 1 Photo