Volunteers from a D.C. nonprofit will visit homes throughout the District to collect candy this Halloween.
Workers with HIPS, an organization that advocates for sex workers and intravenous drug users, will travel to donors’ homes as requested to pick up the leftover treats as part of its yearly Halloween candy drive.
HIPS volunteer Emily Hammell said the nonprofit’s army of candy collectors are usually able to nab dozens of pounds of donated candy.
“The volunteer community of HIPS is really active,” Hammell said. “I’ll probably spend Saturday and Sunday with my old lady grocery cart and a backpack collecting candy.”
The organization, located at 906 H Street NE, hordes the candy to distribute to its clients throughout the year. Though Hammell said the organization will take almost any kind of candy, lollipops and Jolly Ranchers are usually clients’ favorites.
“The candy is used for when staff or volunteers are out in the van doing outreach,” Hammell said. “Also, people are sometimes hesitant to approach the van for the first time.
“If you can come away with a piece of candy, then perhaps your friends or your peers don’t have to know that you went and got condoms or had questions about HIV testing or needed help filing your employment or health paperwork,” Hammell added. “And most people love candy.”
To donate leftover candy, D.C. residents can e-mail HIPS or swing by the nonprofit’s headquarters on H Street. The organization will also welcome candy donations during its happy hour at Asia Nine (915 E Street NW) at 6 p.m. tonight.
Photo courtesy of HIPS