Give hope all year long

Give hope all year long

February 3, 2021 in Charlie's Corner Harvest Time Newsletter

In 2020, thousands of donors stepped up to support The Food Bank. Individuals showed their support by making donations, hosting fundraisers, collecting nonperishable food and volunteering with us throughout the year.

Toward the end of the year, even more supporters contributed—many for the first time—to meet the increased need with a donation or volunteer session. From November 1 – December 31, Ozarks Food Harvest provided 4 million meals. That’s 482,000 more meals compared to the same time frame in 2019.

These generous gifts helped provide millions of meals to food-insecure families and people facing challenges from the effects of the pandemic. Because of you, these families found hope in a dark time.

But the work didn’t stop as we waved goodbye to 2020. We’re hopeful for a better year, but thousands of our neighbors are still facing unemployment and reduced wages in 2021. Gifts to The Food Bank tend to slow down at the beginning of the year, but hunger doesn’t stop after the holidays.

The number of people facing hunger escalates throughout the winter. This year, people are experiencing the bleak obstacles of winter, including higher utility bills and end-of-year expenses, on top of COVID-19-related difficulties.

Year-round giving is absolutely critical to The Food Bank, and it will be especially important this year. The steep increase in need in 2020 consumed a large portion of Ozarks Food Harvest’s resources, and The Food Bank has only been able to keep up with these changes because of generous donations from individuals, businesses and foundations.

Your donations will help support ongoing COVID-19 relief efforts, and they will also help provide funding for The Food Bank’s feeding programs throughout the year. Your gift may help ensure a child has enough food to eat over the weekend through the Weekend Backpack Program, or it may help a grandmother continue to receive a box of nutritious food every month through the Senior Food program.

Last fall, Ozarks Food Harvest received its ninth consecutive four-star rating from Charity Navigator, indicating The Food Bank outperforms most other charities in America. Out of the more than 9,000 charities evaluated by Charity Navigator, only four percent have received at least nine consecutive four-star evaluations. We’re incredibly humbled by this honor—and we hope it assures you that each and every dollar you donate to The Food Bank is being used to bring meals and hope to people across 28 counties in southwest Missouri.

Thank you so much for believing in the work of Ozarks Food Harvest. Let’s work together to help provide meals and hope to our neighbors in 2021.