KEYPORT — Employees of Naval Undersea Warfare Center Division, Keyport donated 4,197 pounds of food for the NUWC Keyport Winter Food Drive, which benefitted numerous organizations in Kitsap, San Diego and Hawaii.
“Times are tough for many of our friends and neighbors, and I’m proud of the fine people at NUWC Keyport who opened their hearts to so many,” said Capt. Dave Kohnke, commander, NUWC Keyport.
“What a pleasant surprise it was to learn that this year’s winter food drive saw an increase in donations of nearly 30 percent over last year. That says a lot about the generous people here.”
NUWC employees in Hawaii contributed 440 pounds of food to the Hawaii Food Bank, while San Diego detachment employees donated 69 pounds of food to San Diego Rescue Mission.
NUWC Keyport and Bangor employees kicked in 3,688 pounds of food, which was distributed to Central Kitsap Food Bank, North Kitsap Fishline, Salvation Army and South Kitsap Helpline.
Locally, Navy divers from NUWC Keyport’s Dive Locker picked up collection boxes throughout Keyport, delivering to food bank volunteers waiting just outside the main gate. The amount of donations was much larger than anticipated: one vehicle used by the divers was so overstuffed that passengers in the vehicle carried boxes of food on their laps and one large box was placed on the roof of the truck canopy.
NUWC Keyport conducted its first food drive during the winter of 2000. Noting that hunger is a year-round problem, NUWC Keyport added a summer food drive in 2007.
Since the program’s inception 12 years ago, NUWC Keyport employees have donated more than 32,000 pounds of food to local food banks.
Established in 1914, NUWC Division Keyport operates the Navy’s full-spectrum research, development, test and evaluation, engineering and fleet support center for submarines, autonomous underwater systems, and offensive and defensive weapon systems associated with undersea warfare and related areas of homeland security and national defense.