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Senators organize milk giveaway at Wichita Wal-Marts

  • The Wichita Eagle
  • Published Friday, Dec. 20, 2013, at 9:08 p.m.

Dreaming of a white Christmas?

About 600 gallons of milk ought to cover that.

That’s what two state senators and two local officials are planning to give away at three Wichita Wal-Marts on Sunday.

Sens. Michael O’Donnell and Oletha Faust-Goudeau said they will give away more than 600 gallons of milk to those in need at the pre-Christmas event. Money for the milk will come from O’Donnell’s campaign account, and the senators will be joined by Sedgwick County Treasurer Linda Kizzire and Wichita City Council member Pete Meitzner, O’Donnell said.

O’Donnell, a Republican, said he and Faust-Goudeau, a Democrat, wanted to collaborate on a project to demonstrate bipartisan cooperation. He said they settled on milk because it’s often the missing ingredient in holiday meals for low-income families.

Because of the logistics of large food banks, typical holiday charity baskets are heavy on frozen turkeys, canned goods and mixes, O’Donnell said. However, “they don’t do perishable items like milk in a lot of cases,” he said.

The milk distribution will be no-questions-asked with regard to recipients’ income, although organizers are hoping that well-off people will show discretion and leave it for their needier neighbors.

The schedule is: 1-2 p.m., 13th and Oliver; 2:30-3:30 p.m., Central and West; and 4-5 p.m., Pawnee and Broadway.

The giveaway will be outside the Wal-Mart stores and with Sunday’s forecast for a low of 6 degrees and a high of 29, nobody’s worried about spoilage.

“I’m sure it will be colder outside than it would be in the refrigerator in the store,” O’Donnell said.

Reach Dion Lefler at 316-268-6527 or dlefler@wichitaeagle.com.

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