Local foundations pour hunger relief funds into Ozarks

May 26, 2009

Forsyth next community to benefit from donations to OFH Mobile Food Pantry

SPRINGFIELD, Mo.— Three southwest Missouri foundations have focused their efforts towards local hunger relief to the tune of $259,500 this year.

Ozarks Food Harvest received grants totaling $51,000 to support additional Mobile Food Pantry distributions and Weekend Backpack programs in rural communities.  The grants will allow the Food Bank to distribute $510,000 worth of food throughout the coming year.

Supplying the support are the Musgrave, Slusher and Heuer Foundations, “Food is a top priority for the Musgrave, Slusher, and Heuer Foundations at this time,” says Jerry Redfern, Foundations Manager.  “Ozarks Food Harvest can leverage every dollar of funding into ten dollars worth of food, and that makes a significant impact to these communities.”

Ozarks Food Harvest will act quickly to utilize these gifts.  One donation from the Slusher Foundation was earmarked for the Forsyth area and the Mobile Food Pantry will now go there this month.

All three of the foundations are focusing their giving towards areas that have been hit hard by the nation’s economic troubles.  The Mobile Food Pantry distributions will target displaced workers who have been unable to find employment due to the current economy.  During a recent Mobile Food Pantry stop, Ozarks Food Harvest served 150 families; only two had ever utilized a food pantry before that day.

Additionally, Ozarks Food Harvest recently received the funding for a second Mobile Food Pantry trailer which will soon be commissioned into The Food Bank’s fleet.  The support from these foundations will allow Ozarks Food Harvest to utilize both trucks to their full potential in the coming months.

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About Ozarks Food Harvest—The Food Bank
Ozarks Food Harvest works with more than 350 hunger relief organizations, reaching more than 53,000 people each month in 29 southwest Missouri counties.  Recently, Ozarks Food Harvest has doubled its distribution to upwards of seven million pounds of food annually, the highest distribution in The Food Bank’s 25 year history.  This is possible because of its network of charities and direct relief programs such as Kids Cafe®, the Weekend Backpack Program™, Club F.U.N.™ and the Mobile Food Pantry™.