NIU’s Parking Services collected more than 650 pounds of food and wiped out 157 parking tickets during its two-week Food for Fines campaign. The food will benefit the Huskie Food Pantry, which aims to help students focus on academic success as opposed to the challenges of food insecurity.
Sue Bidstrup, NIU’s Parking & Traffic Coordinator, says they were excited to build a partnership with the pantry while also giving drivers a chance to clear a fine from their record.
“It’s truly a win-win situation,” Bidstrup said. “It’s a good way to get students involved and be aware of students who are in need. I want to send a special thank you to the many people who participated and donated food, even though they hadn’t received a ticket.”
The Food for Fines campaign allowed individuals to donate five non-perishable food items as “payment” for a parking citation received between August 26 and September 6, 2019. Participants donated 235 cans of soup, 386 cans of vegetables, meat, or fruit and 273 packages of dry goods.