Turning swords into plowshares 

By Stephen Baldwin, RealWV

Gordon Campbell is the President of the Greenbrier Republican Club. Sarah Umburger is the Treasurer of the Greenbrier Democratic Women. They don’t agree on many political issues, but they do agree that no one in their community should be going to bed hungry. 

“I said we are going to do a food drive,” Umberger recalls. “Why don’t y’all join us? And they said sure.” 

“We want to come together,” affirms Campbell. “This is one thing we do agree on, and we’re excited to be part of it.” 

Joint Food Drive

So local Democrats and Republicans are hosting a joint food drive this November. Members of the community are asked to bring requested items or cash donations to one of two dropoff sites between November 1 -16. 

In Lewisburg, donations are accepted at Old Stone Presbyterian Church (Foster Street entrance) on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 2-4pm.  

In Rupert, donations are accepted at the Marvel Center cafeteria (411 Cranberry Ave) on Mondays and Wednesdays from 2-4pm. 

“We’ve got ten food pantries across the country,” says Campbell, “and we will support them all with donations divided equally.” 

“While all types of non-perishable food are welcome,” Umberger notes, “the greatest needs are toilet paper, cleaning supplies, hygiene items (toothpaste, toothbrushes, feminine products), canned fruit, condiments, healthy snacks, jelly and jam, and canned meats.” 

If community members prefer to make a monetary donation, they may do so at the dropoff locations and the funds will be used to purchase needed items. 

Gloria Martin leads the Lewisburg Food Pantry at Old Stone. “I am glad we are working on a non-partisan way to combat an important issue in our community,” she says.

“I think it shows that on issues that affect our fellow citizens we can put aside our politics and work together toward solutions.”

Bridging the Divide

Democrats and Republicans are known for being at odds more often than working together. But both Campbell and Umberger say enthusiasm is high locally for this joint project. 

“We have 100% support,” says Campbell of the Greenbrier Republican Club. “It’s going to be a great thing.” 

“Making sure no one is hungry isn’t political,” adds Umberger. “We might do it again in the spring too.” 

“I hope we can do it several times per year,” Campbell agrees. 

“This is important to everybody, and anyone can do it,” says Umberger. 

Campbell believes it will make an impact locally and beyond, saying, “We hope it inspires others.” 

For further details on the food drive, follow the Greenbrier Democratic Women and Greenbrier Republican Club on social media.

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