RMHC Grants $500,000 to Feeding America

March 8, 2011

Ronald McDonald House Charities® (RMHC®) has donated $500,000 to Feeding America, the nation's largest hunger-relief organization, the charity announced today. The funds will be used to help provide nutritious food, groceries and meals to children living at risk of hunger.

RMHC not only tries to improve the health and well being of children directly through its core programs, but also works with non-profit organizations, like Feeding America, that are making an immediate, positive impact on children who need it most. Feeding America is a network of more than 200 food banks that serve every community in the United States by distributing food and grocery products through more than 61,000 food pantries, soup kitchens, shelters and other emergency feeding centers. Feeding America serves more than 5.7 million Americans each week. In 2009, Feeding America provided assistance to more than 37 million Americans, including 14 million children, an increase of 46 percent in four years.

The $500,000 grant from RMHC will help Feeding America provide meals to children facing hunger through Child Nutrition Programs such as the BackPack Program, Kids Cafe, Afterschool Nutrition Program and School Pantries.

"This generous contribution comes to Feeding America at a time when we are experiencing record-breaking need for our services, especially for children at risk of hunger," said Vicki Escarra, president and CEO of Feeding America."We are very grateful to RMHC for recognizing the urgent need to provide our nation's children.

Northern Illinois Food Bank (NIFB) will receive $250,000 to help enhance their youth nutrition programs, and increase their focus on nutrition education and programming for children. NIFB serves 5,000 children daily and 61,600 hungry neighbors every week, through more than 600 agency partners in 13 counties."The need to help hungry neighbors grows greater every day, so we are grateful to have generous community partners, like RMHC, to aid our neighbors in need," said Dennis Smith, President and CEO of NIFB.

An additional $200,000 will be distributed as member grants to food banks throughout the Feeding America network. A"Request for Proposal" (RFP) will be issued, allowing member food banks to request grant funding where it is needed most, in a manner that will provide maximum impact for children struggling with hunger. Areas of greatest need within the network include School Pantries, Kids Cafes and Summer Food Service programs. Individual food banks will receive grants of between $10,000 and $50,000.

Child Hunger was identified as one of eight priorities within Feeding America's current strategic plan. Feeding America is actively engaged in the process of developing national program models and promoting legislative changes that will move the nation forward in the crusade to end childhood hunger in America. Feeding America's strategy focuses on: (1) strengthening the quality and efficiency of all child nutrition programs; (2) filling the gaps in food service for millions of low-income children, and (3) offering creative ideas for new and innovative approaches to ending childhood hunger.

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About Northern Illinois Food Bank
Northern Illinois Food Bank (NIFB) is a non-for-profit Corporation that provides food to all those in need through its 665 food pantries, soup kitchens, shelters, youth activity centers and other food assistance sites in thirteen counties: Boone, DuPage, DeKalb, Grundy, Kane, Kankakee, Kendall, Lake, McHenry, Ogle, Stephenson, Will and Winnebago. NIFB handles and distributes donated, government, and purchased food to more than 61,600 different people each week. In FY 2010 NIFB distributed over 35 million pounds of food and was named the 2010 Food Bank of the Year by Feeding America. NIFB is building a new Food Distribution and Community Nutrition Center to enable them to handle more food more efficiently to meet the increasing demand.

About Ronald McDonald House Charities
Ronald McDonald House Charities (RMHC), a non-profit, 501 (c) (3) corporation, creates, finds and supports programs that directly improve the health and well being of children. Through its global network of local Chapters in 52 countries and regions, its three core programs, the Ronald McDonald House®, Ronald McDonald Family Room® and Ronald McDonald Care Mobile®, and millions of dollars in grants to support children's programs worldwide, RMHC provides stability and resources to families so they can get and keep their children healthy and happy. All RMHC-supported programs provide a bridge to quality health care and give children and families the time they need together to heal faster and cope better. For more information, visit www.rmhc.org follow us on Twitter (@RMHC), or like us on Facebook (Facebook.com/RMHC Global).


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