Teacher Spends Her Summers Giving Back

Teacher Spends Her Summers Giving Back

August 10, 2018 in Volunteer Spotlight

As a teacher, Amy Viets always looks forward to the summer months—but she isn’t just excited about taking a break from the hustle and bustle of the school year.

For the past seven years, Veits, a drama teacher at Branson Junior High School, has spent her summers volunteering with Ozarks Food Harvest. Her sunny attitude lights up the warehouse each morning when she walks in, and her zeal for volunteering is contagious.

Veits’ passion for helping others through The Food Bank began shortly after the Joplin tornado hit in 2011. “I came into it with an emergency mindset, but now, I see the daily need for food assistance right here in Springfield and in Taney County,” she said.

Along with giving time in the Ozarks Food Harvest warehouse each week, Viets has volunteered at Crimson House, helped pack Senior Food boxes and Weekend Backpacks and worked the phone booth during Hungerthon.

“The people I volunteer with feel like family. I’ve formed a lot of friendships over the last seven years, and we do our best to get dinner once a month!” said Veits.

Since 2011, Viets has donated 300 hours of time to Ozarks Food Harvest—and she plans to keep increasing that number.

“I love helping fulfill that everyday need for food,” she said. “It’s so fun to see the number of pounds that we sorted at the end of each session.”

Ozarks Food Harvest is extremely grateful for Veits’ desire to help fight hunger in the community. Together, we are Transforming Hunger into Hope!

Charlie O’Reilly: Zone Blitz Brings Positive Change

July 6, 2018 in Charlie's Corner

Hello again from the O’Reilly Center for Hunger Relief!

Nearly two years have passed since the Zone 1 Blitz began in northwest Springfield. During the blitz, over 300 organizations— including Ozarks Food Harvest—committed to help improve the lives of residents in the northwest quadrant of Springfield. Projects included weatherization upgrades for homes, new sidewalk construction, bus stop additions, an expansion of affordable internet access and an increase to food access across Zone 1.

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Denise Gibson: 2018 Hunger Action Month

July 5, 2018 in From Denise's Desk

Hunger Action Month will be here before we know it! We have so many events and activities planned to engage the community in the fight against hunger this September.

Throughout the month, Ozarks Food Harvest and other hunger-relief organizations across the country will shed light on food insecurity and how the community can help.

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Raising Awareness of Summer Hunger

July 3, 2018 in Bart's Hope Notes

For many kids in the Ozarks, summer is full of worry about an empty refrigerator or pantry.

According to the latest Map the Meal Gap data from Feeding America, 19.6 percent of children in southwest Missouri are food insecure. That amounts to 50,590 kids under the age of 18 that might not know where their next meal will come from.
Many of these children rely on free or reduced-price meals at school throughout the year. But when school closes for the summer, fear and hunger can set in.

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Empty Bowls 2018

Empty Bowls 2018

June 4, 2018 in Get Involved

Join us for the fifth annual Empty Bowls event! Ozarks Food Harvest and Panera Bread are raising awareness of hunger while supporting The Food Bank’s feeding programs. To participate, stop by Panera on Sept. 28 to make a donation and receive a ceramic or wooden bowl handcrafted by a local artist as well as a meal of soup and bread.

The empty bowls serve as a reminder of those struggling with hunger in southwest Missouri. All the money raised from this year’s event will support children, families and seniors in need.


Artists: Pledge your bowls