C&S Wholesale Grocers Announces Hunger Action Month Initiatives and Investments
Keene, NH -- Hunger affects communities all across the country. The USDA recently reported that nearly 17 million children live in food insecure households. To step up for children at risk of hunger, C&S Wholesale Grocers, its family of companies and its employees joined with people across the nation during Hunger Action Month in September. The company announced initiatives that were a combination of grants to Feeding America member food banks, food donations and employee engagement activities.
Food for Kids Drive
For the tenth year, C&S employees participated in the company’s Food for Kids drive. Non-perishable, child-friendly food items like peanut butter, soup, and tuna were donated by employees and given to the closest food bank. C&S matched each pound collected with a $1 contribution to Feeding America for the BackPack Program, which provides nutritious food to children over weekends and during school vacations. Since 2003, food donations by employees have totaled over 75 tons .
Investment in Food Banks
C&S proudly announced financial investments in nine Feeding America member food banks in or near communities where the company has a presence. The investments focus specifically on initiatives addressing child hunger:
- · Hawaii Food Bank, Honolulu, HI
Reaching children from low-income families, the food bank received support from C&S to launch “Keiki Cooking,” an after-school program during the next two academic years that will offer hands-on education about nutrition, food safety and healthy eating. The Hawaii Food Bank network feeds over 14 percent of Hawaii’s population statewide, including 55,050 children. C&S operates distribution centers in Kapolei, Hawaii, and employs 249 people there.
- · Food Bank of Western Massachusetts, North Hatfield, MA
Support provided for 8 nutrition workshops and 12 mini-workshops to staff and clients of emergency food programs in Hampden County, to assist them in gaining the knowledge and skills they need to provide healthy, well-balanced meals to their families. The workshops will reach a total of 500 food-insecure participants, 35% of whom are children, and will have an extended reach into the families of those participants. C&S operates food distribution centers in North Hatfield and in Westfield, Massachusetts and employs 1,056 people there.
- · New Hampshire Food Bank, Manchester, NH
C&S provided funding to expand the BackPack Program in the southwest corner of the state so that 260 kids in need will receive nutritious meals on Fridays during the next two academic years. The food bank will coordinate with local agencies and ten area schools to fill and distribute the packs, providing an anticipated 4,000+ meals. C&S is headquartered in Keene, New Hampshire and employs 866 people there.
- · Capital Area Food Bank, Washington, DC
Financial support toward expanding the Weekend Bag program during the current school year to 25 schools in Washington DC where almost every other child is at risk of hunger and in Prince George’s county where one in five children are at risk. The initiative will provide nearly 2,000 children with a 6- to 8-pound bag of food to take home on Fridays. C&S operates a food distribution center near our nation’s capital in Upper Marlboro, Maryland, and employs 744 people there.
- · The Community Food Bank of Central Alabama, Birmingham, AL
Support provided to transform a makeshift area in the food bank into a cheery, organized and comfortable space for the volunteers of the organization’s Weekenders Backpack Program. Volunteers currently roll up their sleeves to prepare 38,000 packs annually for 1,900 kids; the new space is expected to help attract and retain more volunteers in order to grow the program. C&S operates a distribution center in Birmingham, Alabama and employs 392 people there.
- · Foodshare, Bloomfield, CT
Support to expand family SNAP (Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program) registration and to double the number of trained volunteers. Eight new community and youth-based sites will help the food bank reach 600 new families. C&S operates distribution centers in Windsor Locks and Suffield, and has 770 employees there.
- · Food Bank of Contra Costa & Solano, Concord, CA / Foodlink, Sacramento, CA
Grant to bring weekly Snack Packs to two elementary schools where all 1,370 children qualify for free or reduced meals and to support monthly deliveries of food to 8 Head Start schools, reaching 330 low-income families. C&S operates distribution centers in Sacramento, and has 132 employees there.
- · Maryland Food Bank, Baltimore, MD
Funding to launch a mobile pantry program at six schools in Harford County. This will reach 4,800 food insecure children and their families through the distribution of 144,000 pounds of food where kids learn, live and play. C&S operates distribution centers in Aberdeen and North East Maryland, and has 500 employees there.
- · Gleaners Food Bank of Indiana, Indianapolis, IN
Support for the BackSacks Weekend Food for Kids program which will provide six nutritious meals and a snack to 4,795 kids every week at 25 schools in or around Indianapolis. The Indy Hunger Network has identified this program as the key channel for fighting hunger among school-aged children. C&S operates distribution centers in Indianapolis and Yorktown, and has 282 employees there.
As a mission partner to Feeding America, C&S Wholesale Grocers donates food to member food banks throughout the year. During Hunger Action Month, the company made special donations to Foodshare in Connecticut for their Convoy of Caring event, and to NH Food Bank agencies.
At multiple locations, C&S employees have tended organic workplace gardens which have yielded donations of fresh vegetables for local food assistance agencies throughout the season.