Local Panera Bread cafés kick off Second Friday’s in 2014 to benefit Weekend Backpack Program
Promo benefits Ozarks Food Harvest’s Weekend Backpack Program
SPRINGFIELD, Mo.— Seven Panera Bread cafés in Springfield, Branson and Joplin are kicking off Second Friday benefits for Ozarks Food Harvest’s Weekend Backpack Program on Valentine’s Day, next Friday, February 14, donating a portion of select menu purchases to the children’s hunger-relief program.
One in four children in southwest Missouri is food insecure, meaning they do not always have access to food at home. Ozarks Food Harvest’s Weekend Backpack Program is one way to fuel these kids with food and hope.
This is the third year for Second Friday’s at Panera in support of local students in need. In 2012 and 2013, the cafés donated a combined $10,000 to Ozarks Food Harvest, which provided 1,500 Weekend Backpacks for hungry Ozarks children.
Ozarks Food Harvest is the regional food bank that provides food and services to 200 nonprofit organizations across 28 counties. The Weekend Backpack Program is one of The Food Bank’s direct-relief programs, providing bags of nutritious, child-friendly food items to at-risk elementary students in Springfield, Branson, Joplin and surrounding communities. The program currently provides 50,000 bags to more than 1,500 children annually in 42 schools.
Panera associates will help raise awareness of hunger by wearing buttons with Ozarks Food Harvest’s logo. Last year, associates sported “Wearing Out Hunger” t-shirts, designed and donated by Five Pound Apparel.
The 2014 dates for Second Friday’s are Feb. 14, Mar. 14, April 11, May 9, June 13, July 11, Aug. 8, Sept. 12 (Hunger Action Month), Nov. 14 and Dec. 12. January and October are excluded.
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About Ozarks Food Harvest
Ozarks Food Harvest is the Feeding America food bank for southwest Missouri, serving 200 organizations across 28 Ozarks counties. The Food Bank distributes 10 million meals annually to 170,000 unduplicated individuals. OFH celebrated its 30th anniversary in 2013 and received its second consecutive Four-Star Charity Navigator rating the same year. Learn more at ozarksfoodharvest.org, facebook.com/ozarksfoodharvest or twitter.com/ozksfoodharvest.
About Panera Bread
Panera Bread locations in Springfield, Branson and Joplin, Missouri, are part of a locally-owned franchise of 32 bakery-cafés in Missouri, Oklahoma and Arkansas. Panera routinely donates bread, baked goods and funds to community organizations. For more information, go to panerabread.com.