General Mills – Joplin gifts $10,000 to OFH

November 21, 2013

Donation for Weekend Backpack Program was presented in Joplin today

JOPLIN, Mo.— The local General Mills plant in Joplin presented a $10,000 donation to Ozarks Food Harvest this morning for the regional food bank’s Weekend Backpack Program. The gift will support OFH’s program at Emerson Elementary School in Joplin.

Ozarks Food Harvest is now providing the Weekend Backpacks to children in more than 40 area elementary schools, including Emerson Elementary in Joplin, which has a 96 percent free and reduced rate. General Mills has donated nearly $60,000 to OFH for this program to help schools in the Joplin and Carthage area, specifically, providing a total of 5,330 backpacks containing approximately 32,000 meals.

The Food Bank distributes 50,000 Weekend Backpacks across the Ozarks annually, in addition to their regular distribution of 12 million pounds of food to pantries and hunger-relief programs each year.

“The mission of General Mills is to nourish lives, and our goal is to live that mission in the communities in which we operate,” said Plant Manager Carolyn Mendel. “By supporting the Weekend Backpack Program, we are helping to meet the most basic needs of children in our community with the hope that addressing hunger issues will enable success in school.”

General Mills is a long-time food and fund supporter of Ozarks Food Harvest, giving a total of $86,500 since 2010 and nearly 900,000 pounds of food since 2003. The largest gift, $48,500, was following the 2011 tornado in Joplin, with nearly half supporting OFH’s Weekend Backpack Program in the Joplin and Carthage communities.

General Mills nationally has also partnered with OFH for more than five years, raising more than $12,500 through cause marketing partnerships.

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About Ozarks Food Harvest—The Food Bank
Ozarks Food Harvest is the Feeding America food bank for southwest Missouri, serving more than 200 organizations across 28 Ozarks counties. The Food Bank distributes 10 million meals annually to 170,000 unduplicated individuals. OFH celebrates its 30th anniversary in 2013. Learn more at, or