Area Rotary Clubs receive top honors on National Philanthropy Day
SPRINGFIELD, Mo.— The five Springfield Rotary Clubs and the Rotary Club of Nixa received the Outstanding Philanthropic Service Project of the Year award at the 2009 National Philanthropy Day award ceremony hosted by the Association of Fundraising Professionals (AFP) – Ozarks Region Chapter on Friday. The Foundation for Springfield Public Schools was named the Outstanding Foundation of the Year. Both organizations were nominated by Ozarks Food Harvest.
“It’s not surprising that these two honorees not only support The Food Bank, but also several of our fellow nonprofits in the community,” said Bart Brown, president/CEO at Ozarks Food Harvest. “We are grateful for their outstanding philanthropic efforts.”
Accepting AFP’s inaugural Outstanding Philanthropic Service Project of the Year award on behalf of all area Rotary Clubs was Tamara de Wild, president of Rotary Club of Springfield–Downtown and secretary of Ozarks Food Harvest’s board of directors. The clubs were honored for the Mobile Food Pantry™ program service project for Ozarks Food Harvest. Last summer, the clubs unveiled the second vehicle donation to the program in less than three years. The Food Bank’s Mobile Food Pantry™ makes it possible to distribute food directly to individuals without the need for a building, and the second truck is insulated, allowing the distribution of fresh produce and other limited shelf life items. This also allows Ozarks Food harvest to distribute product more efficiently, according to Brown.
The Foundation for Springfield Public Schools has partnered with Ozarks Food Harvest to provide financial support to The Food Bank’s Weekend Backpack Program™ in Springfield. Through the Foundation’s efforts, nearly 500 students that participate in the program receive backpacks full of healthy, ready-to-eat foods over the weekends during the school year. As this partnership continues to grow, more students in need at more elementary schools will be able to access this life-saving program.
In 2008, Ozarks Food Harvest received the Outstanding Philanthropic Organization of the Year award and Bart Brown received the Outstanding Fundraising Professional of the Year award.
For a complete listing of this year’s award winners, visit www.afpozarks.org.
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About Ozarks Food Harvest—The Food Bank
Ozarks Food Harvest dedicated its larger, more efficient distribution center on Sept. 15, 2009. It is the only food bank in southwest Missouri and serves more than 350 hunger relief organizations, reaching more than 55,000 people each month in 29 Ozarks counties. OFH distributed seven million pounds of food during its last fiscal year — the highest distribution in The Food Bank’s 25-year history — made possible due to its network of charities and direct-relief programs such as the Weekend Backpack Program™, Kids Cafe® and the Mobile Food Pantry™ program. Learn more at ozarksfoodharvest.org.
About the Association of Fundraising Professionals–Ozarks Region Chapter
The AFP–Ozarks Region Chapter is currently comprised of 77 members, representing local, national and international non-profit organizations. Types of member agencies include arts, consulting, education, financial services, health, legal services, social services and various local, regional and national foundation and associations. The chapter facilitates educations and networking opportunities to advance philanthropy and development professionals. Ongoing programs include AFP Fall Conference, National Philanthropy Day, monthly chapter meetings and conferences. For more information about the local AFP chapter, visit www.afpozarks.org.