Ozarks Food Harvest receives $125,000 grant from the Walmart Foundation
SPRINGFIELD, Mo.— Ozarks Food Harvest received a $125,000 gift from the Walmart Foundation today to support its member food pantries across 28 Missouri counties — in the form of dozens of matching grants.
More than 20 area pantries directors and staff members came to the check presentation today at the O’Reilly Center for Hunger Relief. During the ceremony, Ozarks Food Harvest President/CEO Bart Brown remarked on the longtime support given by the Walmart Foundation in the fight against hunger in southwest Missouri.
“For the past six years, the Walmart Foundation State Giving program has awarded a grant to Ozarks Food Harvest to provide funding for our agencies,” Brown said. “Those agencies in turn fundraise to receive the grant as a match. For instance, if we select one pantry’s grant application to receive $3,000, the pantry fundraises to receive that grant as a dollar-for-dollar match.”
“Our hunger-relief partners will be able to obtain nutritious food with this grant money and provide more food to its clients. I’m proud that we are able to stretch every dollar to provide $10 worth of food. This allows our partner agencies to help more people every day, and that is truly at the heart of everything we do at Ozarks Food Harvest.”
Since 2010, Ozarks Food Harvest has awarded more than 200 pass-through grants utilizing gifts of $515,000 from Walmart, leveraging the State Giving Program’s donations to more than $1 million.
The Walmart Foundation’s State Giving Program supports organizations, like Ozarks Food Harvest, that create opportunities so people can live better, awarding grants that have a long-lasting, positive impact on communities across the U.S.
“We understand that organizations such as Ozarks Food Harvest are essential to building stronger communities. They share our values and are committed to helping hungry people live better lives” said Jessica Hinkle, manager of the Springfield Walmart store located at 2825 N. Kansas Expressway. “Through this donation, we are hopeful that residents in Missouri will enjoy the many health and wellness benefits that fresh fruits and vegetables bring to the table.”
Ozarks Food Harvest was the first food bank in Missouri to award grants to its partner nonprofits and has been recognized nationally for its efforts. In the past five years, Ozarks Food Harvest has provided nearly $1.5 million in agency grants to transform hunger into hope for children, families and seniors across the Ozarks.
As part of Walmart’s $2 billion commitment to fight hunger through 2015, Walmart stores in Missouri donated 23.4 million pounds of food, in fiscal year 2014, or the equivalent of 19.5 million meals. In fact, Walmart reached $260 million in cash and $2.6 billion in in-kind donations nationwide, delivering on its commitment one year early. Additionally, just in the last fiscal year, Walmart and the Walmart Foundation gave $44.9 million to Missouri nonprofits. For more information on Walmart’s fight against hunger, visit foundation.walmart.com/our-focus/hunger.
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About Ozarks Food Harvest–The Food Bank
Ozarks Food Harvest is the Feeding America food bank for southwest Missouri, serving 200 organizations across 28 Ozarks counties. The Food Bank provides 14 million meals annually to more than 260,000 unduplicated individuals. Learn more at ozarksfoodharvest.org, facebook.com/ozarksfoodharvest or twitter.com/ozksfoodharvest.
About Philanthropy at Walmart
Walmart and the Walmart Foundation are committed to helping people live better through philanthropic efforts. By operating globally and giving back locally, Walmart is uniquely positioned to address the needs of the communities it serves and make a significant social impact within its core areas of giving: Hunger Relief & Healthy Eating, Sustainability, Career Opportunity and Women’s Economic Empowerment. Walmart and the Walmart Foundation are leading the fight against hunger in the United States with a $2 billion commitment through 2015. Walmart has donated more than 1 billion meals to those in need across the country. To learn more about Walmart’s giving, go to foundation.walmart.com.