THANK YOU FOR YOUR COMMITMENT TO SOLVING HUNGER
The fight to end hunger is not won in a day. In ways large and small, through the ongoing work of the Feeding America network of food banks and the continued support of hunger champions like you, we make impactful strides to bring more food to more Americans every day. These small steps add up. Last year alone we provided 3.7 billion meals to people in need.
A few of these strides are highlighted in the pages that follow. You’ll read about Feeding America’s leadership in the food recovery space with our inaugural Food Recovery Summit; how our multi-year diabetes work received recognition within the healthcare community; and the creative ways media partners bring attention to the issue of hunger.
I am inspired by so many experiences during my first few months at Feeding America. First-hand encounters with individuals, corporations and partners reveal not only the "how" but also the "why" we work tirelessly to feed America’s hungry. During my time spent volunteering at Miriam’s Kitchen in Washington, D.C., to serve meals to people who are homeless, connecting with Feeding America’s long-time corporate partners or conversing with one of Feeding America’s celebrity supporters, a steady light shines through: commitment.
As the economy struggles to improve, lines at food banks, soup kitchens and food pantries remain long. Although many people we serve will need only temporary food assistance, sometimes the men, women and children who seek our help become familiar faces, needing ongoing support. That is why Feeding America is here for the long haul. With corporate donors, celebrity partners and a host of volunteers, we’ll work hard today to meet the need. And tomorrow, we will do it all again.
To our donors and partners, thank you for inspiring us with your dedication to end hunger. On behalf of the 48 million Americans who may not know where they will find their next meal, thank you for volunteering, providing financial support and raising awareness of food insecurity in the United States. Together, we can solve hunger.
Thanks to you, Feeding America clients like Claudia have hope.
I first visited my local food pantry five years ago. I am a single mother and although I work almost every day, it's just not enough. I needed some extra help – so I decided to ask for it. Visiting the pantry changed my life. Not only has it helped me feed my growing girls, but it also has given me a community and a purpose beyond what I could have imagined.
I began volunteering at the pantry a few months after my first visit. I was with my daughters and the coordinators asked if anyone in line could help translate Spanish to English for them and help hand out food. We all volunteered – and have been volunteering every Friday ever since.
Volunteering for us is a family affair. Each one of my daughters has a different role. The youngest, who is seven, helps me hand out food, while my fourteen year old runs a distribution table by herself. Through our time at the pantry, I have been able to teach my children the value of giving back and helping people in need – a lesson I hope they carry with them all of their lives.
The pantry has also taught us the value of community. Through volunteering I have built invaluable relationships with my neighbors – who are both the people we serve and my fellow volunteers. People around town recognize me now; they say hi and share their stories. They tell me how much the food pantry is helping them – and it feels good to know I am making a difference in their lives.
I love volunteering. I look forward to Friday each week and my children do as well. Although it can be discouraging to see how many people are in need, I find hope in the fact that even more people are willing to help. I encourage everyone to learn more about their local food pantry and get involved. Volunteer or donate. I promise, even giving back in a small way can make a big difference – in your life and the lives of others.
COMING TOGETHER TO MAKE A DIFFERENCE
"If you want to go fast, go alone. If you want to go far, go together." This is one of my favorite African proverbs and I believe it encapsulates so well the recent strides we’ve made in Washington and across the Feeding America network.
This past winter we achieved one of our greatest policy victories yet—the passage of a substantial year end omnibus and tax agreement that included the Consolidated Appropriations Act, the Protecting Americans from Tax Hikes Act and the America Gives More Act. This legislation makes several charitable giving tax incentives permanent which will significantly increase the Feeding America network’s ability to provide more meals for millions of Americans in need.
This legislation is not a victory we achieved alone but was a result of a diverse coalition of strategic partners, allies and friends—people like you—coming together to raise their voices and influence policymakers to act. It is a voice we expressed earlier this year, as we took to Capitol Hill as part of our Anti-Hunger Policy Conference, and it is a voice we must continue to raise not only in Washington D.C., but in our own communities as well.
You see, hunger still exists in each of our hometowns. In fact, it’s still present in every community and congressional district in the United States, according to our newly released Map the Meal Gap 2016 report. This sixth edition of the annual research report analyzes national and local data to estimate food insecurity rates across the U.S. This year, the report concluded that in virtually all counties, there are food-insecure children living in households with limited incomes that are too high for them to qualify for federal nutrition assistance. Through Map the Meal Gap’s interactive map, you can learn more about what hunger looks like in your community—and use it as a tool to educate your peers, colleagues and friends on the issue and inspire action to solve hunger.
One of the greatest actions we can take to fight hunger is to offer our most valuable resource—our time. This April, in honor of National Volunteer Appreciation Month, we recognize the volunteers who give their time to feed their neighbors in need—volunteers like Roberta, whose story you’ll read about in this report. Roberta and her family are just four of the nearly 2 million people who volunteer across the Feeding America network each month. Each volunteer and supporter makes a difference, profoundly transforming the landscape, and through their deeds providing hunger relief. We thank all of you for your efforts to bring about change in this country. We could not serve more than 46 million people without your help. Together, we are making America a better place for all. Together, we can end hunger.
Chief Executive Officer
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ROBERTA AND HER GRANDCHILDREN GIVE BACK BY VOLUNTEERING AT THE LOCAL FOOD PANTRY
My husband and I had good careers but were happy to retire after we paid our dues. However, two years later our three granddaughters came to live with us. Suddenly, with three extra mouths to feed, our pensions didn’t go as far as they used to.
I was ashamed to receive help at first. There’s a food pantry at our church, and the woman who runs it said, "Roberta, you need to sign up. Charity begins at home." So we signed up, and it helped me feed my family.
We’ve come a long way since we first started using the pantry. I went back to school to get a degree in medical coding and billing, and I’m finding myself in a position to give back. I make sure to volunteer at the food pantry every month with my grandkids—I want to instill in them the value of helping people in need.
I’m looking forward to the future. With my new career, I’ll be able to spend time with my family and help my grandchildren get an education so they can be self-sufficient. They’ve been through some rough times, but from here on out their lives will only get better.
Roberta, shown with her granddaughters, resides in Jackson, Mississippi.
FEEDING AMERICA BY THE NUMBERS
MEALS BY SOURCE FROM OCTOBER THROUGH DECEMBER 2015
With your support, Feeding America sourced 1.02 billion meals for Americans in need in the second quarter of fiscal year 2016, 14 percent more meals compared to the same quarter last year.
Donations from Supermarket Retailers
Donations from Manufacturers and Producers
Commodities Provided by the Federal Government
Produce from Farmers and Growers
Donations from Foodservice Providers*
Food Purchased by Food Banks
*Prepared meal providers such as restaurants, hotels and convenience storesMeals by source are compared to the same quarter last year.
A meal from Feeding America is 1.2 pounds of product, based on USDA analysis.
THE 2016 FEEDING AMERICA EMPLOYEE GIVING CAMPAIGN RAISED OVER 1.75M MEALS TO HELP FOOD-INSECURE PEOPLE AND THEIR FAMILIES
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MEET THE NEED AND STABILIZE LIVES
With your help, the Feeding America network continues to deliver more food to more people in need. Our innovative technology, research and distribution methods are part of our comprehensive efforts to bring meals to food-insecure people in the United States.
People struggle to provide enough food for themselves and their families in nearly every corner of the country. To meet the need, Feeding America secures and distributes over a billion pounds of fresh fruits and vegetables annually. In March, Feeding America convened its inaugural Fresh Produce Summit in Tampa. The summit provided food banks and produce industry leaders with a forum to share successes, challenges and learnings and explore new models for improved produce access. Feeding America also provided $1 million in produce planning grants to 51 food banks that developed a strategy for providing more fruits and vegetables to the people they serve. These food banks are eligible for additional grants to help implement their strategic produce plans.
We are grateful to The Walt Disney Company, General Mills and the General Mills Foundation for generously supporting produce planning grants for network food banks.
As America’s largest food-rescue organization, Feeding America is working with partners to help reduce food waste while feeding people in need. Rethink Food Waste through Economics and Data, or ReFED, is a collaboration of public, private and nonprofit partners formed to reduce U.S. food waste. As an advisor on the ReFED team, Feeding America provided valuable food rescue insight for the Roadmap to Reduce U.S. Food Waste by 20% report released in March. At the launch event, Feeding America participated in ReFED’s Innovator’s Panel and highlighted MealConnect, our technology platform previously known as Online Marketplace, that connects retail stores, convenience stores and restaurants that have perishable food donations of any size with local food banks, food pantries or soup kitchens. To date, MealConnect has recovered over 90 million pounds of food from retail food outlets.
We are grateful to Google.org for their generous support for MealConnect.Feeding America Impact Report | SPRING 2016 5
The Feeding America network’s efforts to meet the nutritional needs of struggling families become even more critical in the wake of disasters—natural and manmade. Food banks prepare for these events by staging food and emergency supplies, and participating in regional and national disaster preparedness exercises. Feeding America is working with the Food Bank of Eastern Michigan to monitor and support the needs of Flint residents who continue to cope with contaminated water. The food bank has distributed more than 3.5 million bottles of water since January 2016. You can help. Visit the food bank’s Flint Response Fund page online to make a financial donation or volunteer. Funds will be used to help defray costs to transport water and nutritious food items to area residents. Volunteers will address the increased needs of people in Flint while helping to maintain the food bank’s assistance across the 22 counties they serve.
We are grateful to Abbott, Allstate Insurance Company, Kellogg Company, the Margaret A. Cargill Foundation and other partners who continually support our disaster relief efforts, as well as The Kroger Company and other partners who have generously supported the Food Bank of Eastern Michigan’s recent efforts in Flint and elsewhere.
For six years, through the Child Hunger Corps, Feeding America has tackled one of our network’s greatest barriers to child hunger program expansion: staffing. Since 2010, more than 40 Child Hunger Corps members expanded existing programs to underserved areas, increased program participation and increased community awareness of child hunger. Early results show that food banks with Corps members on average grew their meals by 24 percent the year following the program, as compared to an 8 percent growth seen during that time period in food banks that did not host a Corps member. In a statement echoed by Child Hunger Corps supervisors across our network, "Our Corps member has truly made a lasting and positive difference for children struggling with hunger." Ten food banks eagerly await the arrival of the sixth cohort of Child Hunger Corps members in August 2016.
We are grateful to the ConAgra Foods Foundation for their generous support of the Child Hunger Corps. Donors interested in providing future funding for the Child Hunger Corps program are invited to reach out to their Feeding America relationship manager.
Feeding America highlighted the vital role of volunteers in helping member food banks feed their communities through an integrated campaign that started in January and culminated in April, National Volunteer Appreciation Month. More than 7,600 people pledged to volunteer at their local food bank as part of the campaign.
Feeding America is grateful to those who pledged to volunteer during the campaign and to those who volunteer with Feeding America network members throughout the year, including our partners at Allstate Insurance Company, Ameriprise Financial, Bank of America, ConAgra, The Dunkin’ Donuts & Baskin-Robbins Community Foundation and PepsiCo, among many others.
Twenty member food banks recently completed Feeding America’s first-ever Rural Child Hunger Capacity Institute, a year-long series of studies focused on developing new strategies for reaching children and families living in rural areas. Participating food banks received technical assistance in areas including outreach, transportation, staff training and resource allocation. The program provided a diverse group of food banks with valuable insights and opportunities for collaboration that help them meet the unique needs of food-insecure people in rural communities.
We are grateful to C&S Wholesale Grocers, Inc. for their generous support for the Rural Child Hunger Capacity Institute.
With the support of the Tableau Foundation, Feeding America food banks are taking a giant step forward in their efforts to develop a culture of data-driven decision-making. The Tableau Foundation has provided a $1.9 million grant to Feeding America that will make Tableau software licenses available to all network food banks, enabling them to create dashboards, data storyboards and maps, as well as interactive graphs and charts. To date, more than 90 food banks have begun using the software to express the impact of their work.
CHC6 Feeding America Impact Report | SPRING 2016
BUILDING AWARENESS TO INCREASE ENGAGEMENT
Feeding America is grateful to our partners in the fight against hunger. Whether lending star power or bringing a cause marketing campaign to life, these hunger champions help raise awareness and funds that bring millions of meals to communities across the country.
Tony Robbins’ inaugural 100 Million Meals Challenge surpassed its goal and helped to provide nearly 101 million meals to Feeding America through donations from thousands of supporters and a generous personal gift of $5.9 million.
Food Lion’s "Make Every Basket Count" campaign invited customers to play a virtual basketball game that helped provide 6 million meals to people in need.
Haylie Duff, host of the Cooking Channel show "The Real Girl’s Kitchen," and Lara Merriken, founder of Larabar, visited The Bowery Mission in New York City to kick off the #ShareRealFood campaign with Feeding America and Larabar.
In March, Olive Garden and the Darden Foundation announced their partnership with Feeding America to help provide 5.5 million meals to families facing hunger in communities across the country.
Jennie Garth helped raise awareness of childhood hunger in a Feeding America PSA that highlights the 1 in 5 children who struggle with hunger in the U.S.
For National Soup Month, Zoup! employees volunteered and raised nearly $70,000 to fight hunger in America throughout January. Zoup! customers who made a $3 donation received a free soup coupon.
Feeding America Entertainment Council members Karolina Kurkova and Rocco DiSpirito attended Feeding America’s Pledge To Volunteer event at All Souls Friday Soup Kitchen in New York City.
Julie Bowen of "Modern Family" served up meals at the Downtown Women’s Center in Los Angeles as part of Feeding America’s Hope for the Holidays campaign.Feeding America Impact Report | SPRING 2016 7
SPOTLIGHT: WHY I SUPPORT FEEDING AMERICA
Partha and Sara Sabniviss are new partners to Feeding America, but have long been committed to helping people in need due to their encounters with hunger and poverty in their native country of India. "We saw firsthand the havoc that hunger can wreak on the human body."
Partha and Sara now live in the U.S. and own a company that sells recipe packs for Indian meals. "When we first started our business, our dream was to give back. We decided that Feeding America was aligned with our vision and values and would be compatible with our business model—to feed people."
In addition to supporting Feeding America through their business, the Sabniviss family also participates in hunger relief events in their community. "We volunteer at a food pantry and give to local food drives. We have also partnered with friends in our community to host Friday Indian dinners for 200-300 people at a local food pantry. Our guests get to enjoy authentic Indian food and try something new. Everyone is so appreciative, polite and thankful."
The Sabniviss family has demonstrated a deep dedication to investing in their community, both personally and professionally. "We hope to increase our gifts in future years."
SPOTLIGHT: MAP THE MEAL GAP 2016
For the sixth year running, Feeding America released Map the Meal Gap, an annual research study that provides overall food-insecurity and child food-insecurity estimates for every county and congressional district in the United States as well as county food cost data. The Map the Meal Gap 2016 report was generously supported by The Howard G. Buffett Foundation, ConAgra Foods Foundation and Nielsen. Its key findings include:
• Overall food insecurity ranges from 4 percent of the population in Loudoun County, Virginia up to 38 percent in Jefferson County, Mississippi.
• The "Food Budget Shortfall"—the additional dollars food-insecure Americans report needing to meet their food needs— was $24.6 billion, the highest reported need since 2010.
Learn more about hunger in your community by visiting the interactive map at map.feedingamerica.org.
In January, Feeding America attended an invitation-only convening called "A Conversation on Child Hunger" at the White House. The event included a panel discussion that touched on the ways that the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program helps struggling children and their families. Additionally, more than 1,000 anti-hunger advocates came together in Washington, D.C. for the annual Anti- Hunger Policy Conference hosted by Feeding America and the Food Research and Action Center. The conference included two days of workshops followed by a Lobby Day on Capitol Hill. Following passage of the landmark PATH Act in December 2015, Feeding America’s advocacy and food sourcing teams are collaborating with experts in the tax field to prepare educational materials for donors on the food donation tax incentives established by the legislation. Look for further information in the months to come.
Partha and Sara Sabniviss provide support to Feeding America through financial donations, food drives and volunteerism.