The Circle Ten Council Boy Scouts of America kicks off its annual Scouting for Food Drive on Feb. 12-19, coinciding with the anniversary month of the Boy Scouts of America.

As the Scouting family celebrates the many years of service and dedication to the community, there is no better time to show support for those in need. The food drive gives Scouts an opportunity to feed the hungry and experience the importance of giving back to the community. Every year thousands of local scouts and volunteers participate in the service project, benefitting more than 40 food banks in the North Texas area.

The goal for the 2011 Scouting for Food Drive is for each Scout unit to collect 100 more cans of food than they did the previous year. This is a critical time of the year for many local food banks, as their food supplies have been depleted significantly over the holidays. In 2010, more than 900 packs, troops and crews participated in the drive and collected 433,896 cans of food.

Food bags will be distributed on Saturday, Feb. 12.††† Scouts are looking for non-perishable canned, boxed or bagged items with a high nutritional value.

Necessary food items include goods such as vegetables, meats, chili, soups, pasta, juices and baby formula. An ideal donation bag would include one of each. The Boy Scouts are unable to accept monetary donations as well as foods that are perishable, frozen or in glass containers.

The food will be collected from residences starting at 9 a.m. on Saturday, Feb. 19. Several Plano and Dallas Tom Thumb locations will serve as drop-off locations for food donations. The Tom Thumb stores located at 3100 Independence Parkway, 4836 West Park Boulevard, 3945 Legacy, 2200 East 14th Street, and 7700 Northwest Highway will each have Boy Scouts present to take customer food donations from their cars.

Tom Thumb, Salvation Army, and the Dallas Morning News are the sponsors for the 23rd annual Scouting for Food Drive. Since its inception in 1988, Tom Thumb has generously sponsored the event, which has collected more than 9.7 million cans of food for North Texas food banks.

About Circle

Ten Council

Circle Ten Council, Boy Scouts of America is comprised of 12 counties including Grayson, Collin, Hunt, Dallas, Rockwall, Rains, Kaufman, Van Zandt, Ellis, Henderson and Navarro in North Texas and Bryan County in Oklahoma. More than 38,000 young people participate in the councilís Scouting program on an annual basis and more than 14,000 adult volunteers dedicate their time and energy to make this program a success. Scouting units are chartered to approximately 1,000 community organizations such as schools and churches. Scouts today learn lessons about life and the value of being a person of character and integrity. Scouting is unlike any other youth program. Scouting fosters the development of the whole person and offers youth the opportunity to participate in activities that will help launch them on a successful course for life. For more information about scouting, visit www.circle10.org or call 214-902-6700.