Feeding America announced today that the Food Lion Charitable Foundation and the Western Union Foundation have once again joined forces to support programs that enrich the lives of children by donating $220,000 to 11 Feeding America food banks. The Food Lion Charitable Foundation's contribution is in support of addressing child hunger and the educational component is funded by the Western Union Foundation. The grant focuses on children in the communities that Food Lion and Western Union serve.
Food Lion President Cathy Green Burns and Western Union Foundation representatives presented checks to representatives from the respective food banks during a special presentation on June 1 at the Food Lion corporate offices in Salisbury, N.C.
"Food Lion is a proud supporter of Feeding America," Green Burns said."Our company is dedicated to supporting hunger relief and nutrition education programs in the communities we serve. We strongly believe that no child should ever go hungry, and we hope this contribution will help these food banks to continue to make a difference in the fight to end child hunger."
Child hunger is a prevalent health problem in society, according to John Cook, PhD, an associate professor at Pediatrics of Boston and primary author of Child Food Insecurity: The Economic Impact on our Nation. His research shows that hungry children are sick more often and that they may suffer growth impairments. Hungry children can also incur developmental impairments that limit their physical, intellectual and emotional development, according to Cook. His research has also shown that child hunger is an educational problem citing that hungry children cannot learn as much or as fast and have a tendency to do more poorly in school with lower academic achievements.
Feeding America is committed to alleviating child hunger and focuses on reaching children at all times when they are most in need: in the summer, afterschool, at home, and over weekends and school vacations.
The 11 food banks in the Feeding America network that are recipients of the Food Lion Charitable Foundation and the Western Union Foundation donation employ a variety of innovative approaches to provide nutritious food and nutrition education to children and adults in the communities.
The Feeding America food banks grant recipients are:
At the Capital Area Food Bank in Washington, D.C., children at risk of hunger participate in the Kids Cafe Program. The program helps alleviate child hunger by providing at-risk children access to nutritious food in academically-enriched environments. The Capital Area Food Bank partners with 60 local organizations -- primarily community centers, Boys & Girls Clubs and other nonprofit organizations. These sites are provided with a monthly newsletter which includes nutrition education activities, information about upcoming classes and recipes.
"The Washington metro region ranks third in the nation for the highest rates of hunger for children under the age of 18. Far too many of our children are going to school nutritionally unprepared to learn," said Lynn Brantley, President and CEO of the Capital Area Food Bank."Through the generosity of the Food Lion Charitable Foundation and the Western Union Foundation, we will be able to nourish children and ensure they receive quality, wholesome foods year round."
Established in 2001, the Food Lion Charitable Foundation provides financial support for programs and organizations dedicated to feeding the hungry in the communities it serves.
"Food Lion has a long-standing history of corporate responsibility and assisting those in need in the communities they serve," said Vicki Escarra, President and CEO of Feeding America."For nearly 10 years, Food Lion and its charitable foundation have donated significant quantities of food and funds and have partnered with more than 40 of our food banks. We are also grateful for the generosity of the Western Union Foundation, which works to empower communities with solutions to enrich their lives."
Luella Chavez D'Angelo, President of the Western Union Foundation, said,"The Western Union Foundation is proud to support the educational programs of Feeding America. With opportunities to help educate and inform others, as well as those whose needs are supported by the organization to address child hunger, we all are able to make a difference in the current and future lives of these children."
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Feeding America is the nationwide network of 200 food banks that leads the fight against hunger in the United States. Together, we provide food to more than 46 million people through 60,000 food pantries and meal programs in communities across America. Feeding America also supports programs that improve food security among the people we serve; educates the public about the problem of hunger; and advocates for legislation that protects people from going hungry. Individuals, charities, businesses and government all have a role in ending hunger. Donate. Volunteer. Advocate. Educate. Together we can solve hunger. Visit www.feedingamerica.org, find us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter.
The Food Lion family of supermarkets, based in Salisbury, N.C., operates more than 1,200 supermarkets, either directly or through affiliated entities, under the names of Food Lion, Harveys or Reid's. These stores meet local customer needs and preferences for the freshest and best quality products. The Food Lion family employs approximately 62,500 associates in 11 Southeast and Mid-Atlantic states. For more information, visit www.foodlion.com.
About Western Union Foundation
Through Western Union's Our World, Our Family(R) signature program, the Western Union Foundation supports initiatives to empower people through access to economic opportunity. Recognized by the Committee Encouraging Corporate Philanthropy in 2009, the program is a five-year, $50 million commitment reflecting efforts made by Western Union employees, agents and partners around the world. Since 2001, the Western Union Foundation has awarded more than $73.4 million in grants to more than 2010 nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) in 104 countries and territories. To learn more, visit foundation.westernunion.com.
About Capital Area Food Bank
The Capital Area Food Bank, founded in 1980, is the largest nonprofit food distribution and nutrition education resources in the Washington metro area. Its goal this year is to distribute 30 million pounds of food – half of which is fresh produce – through direct service and a network of more than 700 partner agencies to 480,000 area residents.