The Harry Chapin Food Bank of Southwest Florida is pleased to announce that Bank of America has awarded a $10,000 grant to the food bank for its Food Rescue and Distribution Program.
This program rescues fresh dairy, deli, produce and meat products that are still fine for human consumption, but formerly would have been tossed in a Dumpster.
“Bank of America’s investment in our organization will help us in our mission to fight and overcome hunger in Southwest Florida,” said Al Brislain, food bank president and CEO. ”The food bank is grateful for their support.”
Despite a recovering economy, individuals continue to struggle to provide basic necessities for their families. Southwest Florida is no exception.
According to the 2013 Annual Social and Economic Supplement by the US Census Bureau, more than 46 million people and more than 20% of children under 18 live in poverty. Many are hard-working Americans who have experienced loss of income and face the challenge of choosing between providing foods for their families or paying their utility bills.
The Harry Chapin Food Bank solicits, collects and distributes quality food to families in need through a network of more than 150 nonprofit agencies in Lee, Collier, Hendry, Charlotte and Glades counties.
During fiscal year 2014-2015, the food bank provided 18.4 million pounds of food to its partner agencies and programs. This figure represents a 450 percent increase in food distributed in Southwest Florida over the last eight years.
Children and seniors make up 50 percent of the people the food bank serves. Other groups include the underemployed, single-parent and other low-income families, the disabled, homeless, and battered women and children.
The food bank serves 30,000 Southwest Floridians each month. The food bank began its Fresh Produce Program in 2008. The food bank has also established partnerships with more than 140 grocery/retail stores for its Retail Store Food Rescue Program. This ensures that children, families and seniors have access to a variety of dairy, meat and vegetable products to provide a balance of key nutrients needed for optimal health.
That’s why the food bank is proud to partner with Bank of America to continue this vital program for individuals and families in our community. The food bank’s goal is to not only feed those in need, but to educate the public about the problem of hunger and to advocate for families facing hunger. The Harry Chapin Food Bank is recognized as a four-star organization by Charity Navigator, the national nonprofit watchdog organization.