All Faiths Food Bank announced Tuesday its Campaign Against Summer Hunger raised $1.1 million in funds and 766,253 pounds of food to feed children and families over the summer.
The 40-day campaign, which ended May 10, is part of All Faiths’ efforts to end hunger for Sarasota families. All Faiths Food Bank, with support from Gulf Coast Community Foundation and The Jewish Federation of Sarasota-Manatee, launched the campaign to encourage Sarasota residents to “empty their shelves” and make a cash gift so no child in the community goes hungry this summer. Fifty percent of students in Sarasota County (21,000 students) receive free and reduced meals. During the summer, children are more likely to experience hunger than any other time of year.
When the campaign kicked off April 1, private investors had contributed a $500,000 challenge match. Collectively, members of the community donated more than $600,000. Sarasota businesses, individuals, government officials and community leaders supported the campaign and raised awareness with food and fund drives.
“This summer we will be able to feed children and their families during the time of year when they need us the most,” said Sandra Frank, CEO of All Faiths Food Bank. “We are so grateful to Gulf Coast Community Foundation for its unwavering support, and to our community for again reminding us that we are surrounded by people who care deeply about our less fortunate neighbors.”
Even though the campaign has ended, the community can still support programs by conducting food drives and making donations. Non-perishable food items can be dropped off at any Goodwill location, and donations can be made online at allfaithsfoodbank.org.
“Children needed our help, and now we have the resources to make sure they have hot meals and fresh fruit and vegetables this summer,” said Keith Monda, All Faiths board member. “We’ll be asking for the community’s support in getting the word out to families that food is available throughout the summer because of the new and enhanced programs we’ve established.”
BY THE NUMBERS
$1.1 million — total amount raised in funds during the campaign
766,253 — pounds of food raised to feed children and families over the summer
200+ — bins contain non-perishable items such as canned goods, dry goods, cereals, peanut butter and beverages that were collected
21,000 — number of Sarasota County students who receive free and reduced meals
40 — number of days of the campaign
Contact Harriet Sokmensuer at [email protected]robserver.com