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Annual store fundraiser collects $44,000 for hunger relief in the Ozarks

Annual store fundraiser collects $44,000 for hunger relief in the Ozarks

March 30, 2017

Nearly 60 grocers participate in the 18th Check Out Hunger supporting Ozarks Food Harvest

SPRINGFIELD, Mo.— Nearly 60 area grocery stores partnered with Ozarks Food Harvest for the 18th annual Check Out Hunger, raising $44,012 to provide more than 176,000 meals to people in need across southwest Missouri.

Although the fundraiser ran from November through December 2016, The Food Bank received checks from participating grocers throughout the first few months of 2017. This is an ideal time for Ozarks Food Harvest to receive the financial boost from Check Out Hunger due to the drop in donations The Food Bank experiences after the holiday season.

“We are truly grateful for the loyal support of our local grocers who have helped make Check Out Hunger such a success over the past 18 years,” said Denise Gibson, development and communication director at Ozarks Food Harvest. “Their help has been vital in raising these needed funds, and also by educating the public about the one in four people across the Ozarks who struggle with hunger.”

Check Out Hunger gives shoppers the opportunity to add a $1, $3 or $5 tax-free donation to their grocery bill when checking out at area retailers during the holiday season.

In 2016, participating grocers included Akin’s Natural Foods, Bistro Market, Country Mart, Harter House, Hy-Vee, King Cash Saver, Murfin’s Market, Pennington’s Supermarket, Price Cutter, Price Cutter Plus, Ramey, Rhodes Family Price Chopper, Summer Fresh and Woods Supermarket.

“This drive is made possible by the many community members who stepped to give donations throughout this holiday drive. We’re so thankful for their gifts and support,” Gibson said.

Since the annual fundraiser began, Check Out Hunger has raised a grand total of $462,893 — providing nearly 2.27 million meals for hungry people throughout The Food Bank’s 28-county service area.

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About Ozarks Food Harvest — The Food Bank

Ozarks Food Harvest is the Feeding America food bank for southwest Missouri, serving 270 organizations across 28 Ozarks counties. The Food Bank provides 15 million meals annually to more than 261,000 unduplicated individuals. Learn more at ozarksfoodharvest.org, facebook.com/ozarksfoodharvest or twitter.com/ozksfoodharvest.