Kum & Go and Ozarks Food Harvest are partnering for a new food rescue program that began this fall. As the newest Retail Pick-Up partner, Kum & Go donates safe, prepared excess food to Ozarks Food Harvest’s partner agencies.
Items donated include breakfast sandwiches, hot and cold lunch sandwiches, salad and produce, fresh packaged bread and bakery items.
“As we continue to look for ways to reduce waste, help our communities and tackle hunger close to home, we are excited to get the program up and running,” said Derek Nelson, sustainability manager for Kum & Go.
This year marks the eighth time the Walmart Foundation’s State Giving Program has awarded a pass-through grant to Ozarks Food Harvest to provide funding for its member pantries and programs.
Walmart’s gift of $125,000 in grants was divided among 66 member agencies selected by The Food Bank. Because of the power of this matching grant, the total impact will be $250,000. Agencies have until February to raise the matching funds.
The Walmart Foundation’s State Giving Program supports organizations, like Ozarks Food Harvest, that create opportunities so people can live better, awarding grants that have a long-lasting, positive impact on communities across the U.S.
Ameriprise Financial employees strive every day to provide their clients with the best financial advice. Their company values respect for individuals and the communities in which they are a part of. Employees live out this value by donating time as volunteers.
Twice a year, Ameriprise Financial organizes a company-wide National Day of Service to help those in need. In 2016, 14,000 employees participated in this campaign and donated 81,000 hours of time.
Ozarks Food Harvest’s Glean Team had another successful growing season this year.
Thanks to the continued hard work from volunteers, 29,633 pounds of locally-grown produce was harvested. The Plant a Row for the Hungry initiative also brought in 20,916 pounds of fresh produce, leaving the Full Circle Gardens program total at 50,549 pounds this season. Ozarks Food Harvest could not have done it without the help from compassionate volunteers and partners!
As the year is coming to a close, I’ve found myself reflecting on how fortunate we are to be a part of such a compassionate community. This past winter we established Harvest Circle, our group of monthly supporters. I consider these donors to be the heart of The Food Bank.
We rely on their continuous support to sustain us so we can provide 17 million meals each year to the families and seniors who struggle to put food on the table.
Poverty continues to be a challenge for folks who live in our community.
Wages in the Ozarks are much-lower than the national average, and in Springfield, wages are at just 60 percent compared to what people are earning nationally.
It’s heartbreaking to think about the folks in our community who face obstacles securing housing and transportation because of low-wages, causing them to take on debt just to cover the everyday costs of living.
But thankfully, we live in a community who doesn’t turn its back on our neighbors.