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Stay up to date on all the exciting happenings at the Utah Food Bank.

Join us for our 14th annual Utah Human Race, held on Thanksgiving morning (November 28) in Draper. All of our runners have a direct impact on the 374,000 Utahns facing hunger because all registration fees and sponsorship dollar benefits our mission of Fighting Hunger Statewide. This race is one of the largest 5K/10K races in the state and we expect a crowd of more than 5,000 runners and their families dressed in their finest costumes.

This year’s race will be in a new location, but still in Draper– Vista Station Business Park (12921 Vista Station Blvd.) Also new this year– both 10K and 5K races will begin at 8:00 a.m.

 
Registration fees are $25 for the 5K and $30 for the 10K. Early Bird discount of $5 per person is available through October 31st, using promo code EarlyBird2019. Online registration closes on November 25th at noon. You will not be able to register the day of the race, but registration will be available in-person during packet pick-up at Utah Food Bank on November 27th.

 
Registering an individual or a team is easy and you can spearhead your own fundraising efforts within your social groups, which only increases the impact this race has on our neighbors in need.

To register, please visit www.UtahHumanRace.org.

Can’t wait to see you Thanksgiving morning. Gobble gobble.


Utah Food Bank is thrilled to announce a $50,000 grant from the Morgan Stanley Foundation to help fund the expansion of the Mobile School Pantry Program in Utah County. The Mobile School Pantry program provides a cost-effective food distribution point for children and their families at the end of the school day in a safe and trusted environment—the school playground. Last year, Utah Food Bank served 305,000 individuals statewide, 169,000 of whom were children, through this program alone. Across the state, an estimated 142,320 Utah children, the equivalent of 1 in 7, face the pain of hunger.

 

Current research shows that children who lack sufficient nutrition are more likely to experience physical, emotional and developmental impairment. The Mobile School Pantry program approaches childhood hunger with the understanding that children are only truly protected from the pain and anxiety of hunger when their whole family has enough food to stay healthy. This approach makes the Mobile School Pantry program especially effective. Teachers and school administrators report that this holistic approach creates better educational environments and a stronger sense of community among the student body and their families.

 

This school year, the program has increased participating schools statewide from 69 to 85, with an additional 11 new schools in Utah County. Expansion throughout Utah County has been a significant priority of Utah Food Bank, partially due to the lack of food resources available for its residents who face hunger. In fact, despite the fact that Salt Lake and Utah Counties have similar hunger rates, the ratio of food pantries to people facing hunger in Salt Lake County is 1 to 1,397, while in Utah County that ratio is 1 to 12,458. Insufficient infrastructure combined with a general lack of awareness of need in Utah County means that this expansion will go a long way in helping to close this resource gap.

 

According to Kevin Johnson, Branch Manager, “With an engaged employee base and a culture of giving back, Morgan Stanley is honored to support Utah Food Bank in its efforts to help the children in our community get the food they need.”

 

“We are thrilled to receive this vital grant from Morgan Stanley in support of the Mobile School Pantry Program, particularly in Utah County, where 14% of children face hunger,” said Ginette Bott, President & CEO of Utah Food Bank. “Morgan Stanley is a terrific partner in Fighting Hunger Statewide, and we are grateful for the support its employees have shown through generous donations of both time and financial contributions.”

For more information about this program, please click HERE.

Morgan Stanley


Smithfield Foods, Inc. and Smith’s Food & Drug, joined forces to donate more than 40,000 pounds of protein to us as part of Smithfield’s 2019 Helping Hungry Homes® donation tour. Helping Hungry Homes® is Smithfield’s signature hunger-relief initiative focused on alleviating hunger and helping Americans become more food secure. The donation, equivalent to more than 160,000 servings, will help families fight hunger across the state. This year marked the third such donation to Utah Food Bank, bringing the grand total to 470,000 servings of protein provided through this effort.

“Here at the Utah Food Bank, we understand that hunger is all around us, but getting food to hungry Utahns requires considerable resources,” said Ginette Bott, president & CEO for Utah Food Bank. “We’re grateful for partners, like Smithfield Foods and Smith’s, who provide the necessary nutrition to feed those in need. This donation will support many in our community, and we are pleased to continue working to alleviate hunger in our great state.”

Representatives from Smithfield and Smith’s, presented the donation to us, which is significant not only for its size, but also because it consists of much-needed, but rarely donated, protein-rich food items. After the donation, employees from Smithfield and Smith’s volunteered their time here at our warehouse filling boxes with food destined for homebound seniors and people with disabilities.

This was the 38th large-scale protein donation made by Smithfield to food banks across the country during its 2019 Helping Hungry Homes® tour. Since the program’s inception in 2008, Smithfield has provided more than 130 million servings of protein to food banks, disaster relief efforts, and community outreach programs nationwide.

“At Smithfield, we’re dedicated to feeding people, especially in the communities we call home,” said Jonathan Toms, associate manager of charitable initiatives for Smithfield Foods. “We’re humbled to provide this donation to support our neighbors in need throughout Utah, and we’re pleased to partner with like-minded organizations like Smith’s as we work to alleviate food insecurity for all Americans.”

Smithfield Foods


For so many kids, summer means pools, sprinklers and fun. But for a surprising number of Utah children–142,320 of them to be exact–summer means worrying about where their next meal will come from. When school is out, so are the school meals that so many families rely on during the school year. To combat this, Utah Food Bank and many providers across the state off free meals through the Summer Food Service Program, which is sponsored by the USDA. These meals are available to children 18 years of age and under through a variety of sites such as parks and community centers across the state. Utah Food Bank is offering these meals at 50 sites this summer, with plans to serve more than 100,000 meals at sites located in Carbon, Davis, Iron, San Juan, Salt Lake, Utah and Washington Counties. In fact, we distributed over 47,000 meals in June alone, so we are well on our way to exceeding our 100,000 meal goal!

According to Jessie, a parent to two children who benefit from summer meals, “I worry about a lot of things. I worry about how I’m going to pay rent and how I’m going to put food on the table.” During the summer, when her kids don’t have access to school meals, Jessie also worries about filling in that meal gap for her children. Her son Deron admits “If we didn’t have the food from the community center, we wouldn’t eat as much in the summer. It helps us a lot.”

If you or anyone you know needs help filling the summer meal gap, there are several resources available:

  • View Utah Food Bank’s summer meal sites (closed until Summer 2020)
  • View the USDA list of summer meal sites throughout the state
  • Text “FOOD” to 877-877
  • Call the toll-free United Way 2-1-1 information and referral services hotline

 


It’s summer, and for many Utah families summer means swimming pools, vacations and playing at the park. But for the families we serve, summer means increased food insecurity due to the summer nutrition gap. When kids are out of school, they also lose access to school meal programs, and parents have to find a way to provide two additional meals daily, putting additional strain on an already-thin budget. These kids spend their summer worrying about where their next meal will come from instead of swimming at the pool. Sadly, donations are also at their lowest during the summer months as families in a position to help are busy with their summer activities.

Our annual Summer Business Food & Fund Drive runs through the end of August and focuses on local businesses, because just like hunger, they don’t take a summer vacation. We encourage businesses and organizations across the state to host food and/or fund drives at this critical time of need. There are so many creative ways to motivate your coworkers to give, whether it’s an opportunity to wear jeans in exchange for a donation, incentives for employees to participate, or even a bake sale to benefit our work. You’d be surprised to see what a little healthy inter-department competition can do in the name of helping Utah kids facing hunger!

We even offer a Virtual Food Drive, which allows you to create your own donation page where employees can “shop” for the items they wish to donate, while taking advantage of our incredible purchasing power!  If you prefer a traditional food drive, we offer supplies and transportation services (500 lbs. minimum) so your employees can donate at your workplace. Or you could take inspiration from sponsor Les Olson Company who supports us with a combination of the two, and even offers payroll deductions to their employees to make it even easier for them to participate!

If you’re not sure where to get started, take a look at our Food Drive FAQs. If you’re ready to help the 1 in 7 Utah kids facing hunger during this critical time of need, visit our Summer Business Food & Fund Drive webpage to sign up. Thank you for your support!

Summer Business Food & Fund Drive


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