Connecticut Food Bank has a new partner in its efforts to fight hunger in the state. Since September of this year, the state¹s largest food bank has operated a Mobile Pantry Program that brings nutritional items to food insecure families and households in six Connecticut counties.
The Mobile Pantry Program gives Connecticut Food Bank the ability to distribute fresh food items including dairy products, fresh vegetables, fruit, whole grain goods and other perishable items directly to individuals in need. The healthy food choices are due in large part to a $100,000 grant from Wal-Mart employees submitted through the Wal-Mart Foundation¹s Associate Choice Program.
“We are extremely grateful for this generous donation that will make a world of difference in the lives of people struggling with food insecurity in the communities we serve,” said Nancy L. Carrington, Chief Executive Officer of Connecticut Food Bank. “Connecticut Food Bank is proud to be recognized by the Wal-Mart Foundation’s Associate Choice Program for the vital service that we, along with our volunteers and partners, provide to those in need on a daily basis.”
Carrington said the Mobile Pantry Program is convenient for people in need who may not have the transportation or financial means to access resources for fresh, nutritional products. She said people with limited means often stretch their food budgets by purchasing inexpensive, high-calorie products. Local food-assistance programs may not have large-scale refrigeration and storage facilities for perishable foods. Those programs are limited to providing processed and non-perishable items.
“The Mobile Pantry Program allows recipients to select the items they need from the pantry truck in their own neighborhoods,” said Carrington. “For those that rely on food pantries, thanks again to the kindness and generosity of Wal-Mart employees, perishable products will now be available.”
According to the latest figures from the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), Connecticut had one of the largest increases in food insecure households in the country since 2007. The Mobile Pantry Program will help Connecticut Food Bank address the needs of many of the 400,000 food insecure residents in the state.