Stop & Shop to Raise Awareness for Child Hunger
By Grocery Headquarters Staff
As part of its ongoing mission to fight hunger in the local communities it serves, the Stop & Shop Supermarket Company is teaming up with multiple GRAMMY nominee Hunter Hayes and ConAgra for the "Hunter Hayes' 24 Hour Road Race to End Child Hunger," which kicks off on May 9 in Times Square. Hayes is raising awareness to help end child hunger while attempting to break the GUINNESS WORLD RECORDS record for Most Concerts Played in multiple cities in 24 hours. "Stop & Shop is committed to being a better neighbor in our local communities, especially around hunger relief and child-related efforts," said Joe Kelley, president, Stop & Shop New England division. "No child should go hungry, but approximately 16 million children in the United States currently live in households without consistent access to adequate food." "As a food retailer, we continue to play an important role in the fight against hunger and regularly work hand in hand with our local food banks through donations and also associate volunteering," said Don Sussman, president, Stop & Shop New York Metro division. "In recent years, we have been able to expand on that commitment through the donation of high protein meat, the funding of mobile food pantries and a greater emphasis on ensuring kids most in need have access to healthy food." To alleviate child hunger by reaching more food insecure children with healthy meals, Stop & Shop and its parent company Ahold USA's Our Family Foundation, is in the second of a three year initiative to distribute $6 million in Fighting Child Hunger grants to 16 regional food banks throughout its market area. These grants target communities with significant need in order to provide millions of healthy meals to children through child care, after school, mobile pantries, and summer programs, as well as other innovative approaches. At Greater Boston Food Bank, they are utilizing their Stop & Shop Fighting Child Hunger grant to transition their BackPack program to school-based food pantries and expand mobile distributions. The grant also contributes to summer feeding programs that ensure kids receive meals during the summer when they cannot take advantage of the meals they receive during the school year. "We are tremendously grateful for this grant from Our Family Foundation and Stop & Shop/New England Division for the second year. One in nine residents of eastern Massachusetts is at risk of hunger, and as many as one in four are children. These families and children in our community will benefit from this grant immediately, as it will allow The Greater Boston Food Bank to distribute enough nutritious food for 900,000 meals at our direct distribution sites. Our Family Foundation's generosity is truly supporting GBFB's mission to end hunger here in eastern Massachusetts," said Catherine D'Amato, President and CEO, The Greater Boston Food Bank. With its Fighting Child Hunger grant, Connecticut Food Bank was able to start and support the GROW Up with Good Nutrition Initiative which includes a walk-in mobile food pantry truck with fresh produce and healthy groceries targeting low-income families with young children. The initiative was launched in fall 2013 when it began to make product deliveries to families participating in the Head Start program. In addition, during last year's government shutdown when these Head Start programs had to close their doors, leaving children without meals they would have otherwise received during daycare, the Connecticut Food Bank used the grant funds to provide emergency food distribution to 1,200 children enrolled at three closed Head Start locations. "By providing young families with fresh, nutritious foods, we are improving the nutrition content of each participating household's meals," said Nancy L. Carrington, Connecticut Food Bank President and CEO. "Through the generosity of Stop & Shop, we are able to expand the nutritional value of meals they prepare at home while educating the youngsters about good nutrition that will last a lifetime."