Online Staff Report
SPRINGFIELD, Ill. — During the last two weeks in February, several courthouses in Illinois will become more than symbols of law, order and justice: they will serve as collection points for Lawyers Feeding Illinois, a food and fund-raising drive by the Illinois State Bar Association (ISBA) to provide 1 million meals to hungry Illinoisans.
Thanks to the efforts of Illinois judges, collection containers for non-perishable food items will be placed in courthouses in Bloomington, Danville, Dixon, Edwardsville, Galesburg, Joliet, Kankakee, Mt. Vernon, Ottawa, Peoria, Quincy, Rockford, Rock Island, Urbana and Wheaton, and the Lake County Bar Association office in Waukegan.
The campaign, to be held Feb. 18-March 1, aims to help the estimated 1.9 million hungry Illinoisans obtain adequate food.
“Judges in Illinois wanted to get behind this effort and play a part in helping this important cause,” said Judge Robert Anderson, of Wheaton, and Judge Izzy Desierto, of Chicago, officers in the Illinois Judges Association, who are coordinating the effort.
In cooperation with Feeding Illinois and support from the Office of Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan, the ISBA’s food and fund-raising drive is the brainchild of ISBA President John E. Thies of Urbana. His wife, Terry, is chairman of the steering committee for the event.
Since it was launched in mid-November at a news conference with Madigan, more than 80 lawyers and lawyer teams have signed up to participate. Information and a lawyer sign-up page are available at www.lawyersfeedingil.org.
Thies said the entire bar welcomed the judges’ support. “These are difficult times financially for many Illinois families,” he stated. “Efforts by our state’s judges will help call attention to the ongoing problem of hunger, as well as collect non-perishable food items that directly help families and individuals in need.”
The 32,000-member ISBA (isba.org), with offices in Springfield and Chicago, provides professional services to Illinois lawyers, and education and services to the public through a website (illinoislawyerfinder.com), a cable television program (“Illinois Law”), consumer brochures and distribution of legal information.
Feeding Illinois is a coalition of eight Feeding America food banks providing food to 1,885 agencies, including food pantries, soup kitchens and shelters that feed 1.4 million residents across the state. The organization is committed to educating people about the role of food banks in addressing hunger and raising awareness of the need to devote more resources and attention to hunger issues.
Feeding Illinois is composed of Central Illinois Foodbank, Eastern Illinois Foodbank, Greater Chicago Food Depository, Northern Illinois Food Bank, the Peoria Area Food Bank, River Bend Foodbank, St. Louis Area Foodbank and Tri-State Foodbank.
Posted Feb. 20, 2013