5:55 AM on Wednesday, February 12th, 2014No Comments
We honor our Presidents this month because they’ve been charged with leading our country and regardless of your political persuasion; we can all agree this is no easy task. As President and CEO of Food Bank of the Rockies, I have the task of leading our organization to mission accomplished. Our mission states, “We will end hunger by efficiently procuring and distributing food and essentials to the hungry, through our programs and partner agencies.” And we know this also is no easy task.
When we look back over the years, Food Bank of the Rockies can proudly say we’ve grown to distribute more pounds and feed more people today than ever before, more than doubling what we distributed just six years ago. We know this is due to the generous contributions of funds, food and time from our community and the mission driven work of our team at the food bank. For everyone’s efforts, we are truly grateful!
But we also know this is still not enough to accomplish our mission. 1 in 7 Coloradans are struggling to put food on the table. Nearly 1 in 4 kids live in homes where they don’t have enough to eat. And during these cold winter months, almost half the clients receiving food through our programs and partner agencies are deciding whether to heat their homes or eat a meal. These heartbreaking statistics mean our work is not done. And with more cuts coming to SNAP, we anticipate even more clients turning to food pantries in their time of need. We’ll continue to fight hunger we need you to stay in the battle with us.
How can you make a difference? I like to bring up the visual of a three-legged stool. If any legs are missing or shorter than another, the stool can’t stand. Our stool’s legs are funds, food and time. We need all three to keep standing strong. Funds come from individuals, corporations, foundations, grants and estates. Every dollar we receive becomes 4 meals or 5 pounds of food. Food comes from our retailers, farmers, ranchers, wholesalers and community. And time can come in the form of volunteering at the warehouse, making a call to your congressperson, participating in our events, “liking” our Facebook page, following us on Twitter and LinkedIn, signing up for our emails and even reading our blog posts.
With continued contributions of funds, food and time, we’ll keep on fighting and we thank you for being one of our soldiers! Every effort means kids like Jeff will have a warm dinner at a Kids Cafe. Seniors like Marjorie won’t have to choose between taking medicine and having enough to eat. And pantries, soup kitchens, shelters, and other programs will continue to feed those who walk humbly through their doors, asking for something to eat.
We’re glad you’re thinking about us and reading this message. We appreciate you!
Warm regards and Happy Presidents’ Day,
10:45 AM on Saturday, February 1st, 2014No Comments
Peabody Elementary first grade classes greeted us with a warm welcome last week. Over the holidays, the three classes participated in the Kung Food Fighters Kids Club's Quarters for Kids campaign. The students raised $207.05 which translates to 828 meals!
We visited the school to pick up the coins and had a chance to talk with the students. When asked if they had to do anything special for their quarters, many said they cleaned their rooms, raked leaves, helped with the dishes, walked the dog and even helped out their neighbors! These bright kids were quick to say what it feels like to be hungry and shared how tummies growl and it's just "terrible"! They learned that many people can be hungry and it's hard to tell if someone is struggling to find food just by looking at them.
We appreciate the wonderful team of teachers who decided to team up with Food Bank of the Rockies and were moved to see everyone’s enthusiasm about the project. Thank you Peabody Elementary for your warm welcome and big hearts. We appreciate your efforts to help us Fight Hunger and Feed Hope!
One of the most enjoyable private Christmas displays you’ll ever see is located near 58th and Ward Road in Arvada. Stop by Tom and Ed’s place during the holidays and you’ll be treated to twinkly lights moving to music and bringing lots of joy to the crowd.
Tom and Ed do this purely for the love of it each year and didn’t want to accept money for their power bill. Instead, they started accepting donations on behalf of Food Bank of the Rockies. Over the last few years, they’ve helped us provide tens of thousands of meals through their and their visitors’ generosity. This year was no exception. We received a gift from Tom, Ed and their visitors that will provide 11,244 meals!
Thanks for not only lighting of the holiday season, Tom and Ed, but for also brightening the New Year for our hungry neighbors!
Panera Bread is volunteering at our warehouse today. We asked them to share a little bit about how they make a difference. We are very grateful for their partnership and look forward to providing many meals to our community because of their and their customers' generosity!
At Panera Bread®, we believe in giving back to the communities in which we serve. We have worked to help combat the problem of hunger in Denver for 12 years when we opened our first bakery-café in Colorado. Since then, our efforts fighting hunger have grown to include various charitable initiatives, donations and numerous community events.
Panera is proud to partner with Food Bank of the Rockies, an outstanding partner who is providing meals to our neighbors in need.
We partner with FBR through our Operation Dough- Nation Community Breadbox™ program where customer’s spare change is collected and donated annually to FBR. On January 20th, 2014, Panera associates have a unique opportunity to volunteer their time during the MLK National Day of Service to the Food Bank of the Rockies. This unique volunteer opportunity gives our associates the ability to follow the donations in our ODN boxes and witness firsthand the change it makes in our community. Every cent counts! As a partner with FBR we enjoy seeing how these donations add up to big change in our community. Next time you are in a Panera, unload your pockets in our Operation Dough-Nation Community Breadbox! Don’t forget to mark your calendar for annual Panerathon 5K/10K in September!
3:27 PM on Thursday, December 19th, 2013No Comments
Jessica Rink, Corporate Social Responsibility Project Manager for Bank of America stopped by the food bank yesterday with a wonderful gift. Thanks to a grant from Bank of America Charitable Foundation, Food Bank of the Rockies will be able to provide 40,000 meals to our neighbors in need, just in time for the holidays. The grant we received is part of ongoing investments the Bank of America Charitable Foundation is making to address immediate critical needs, such as hunger and shelter, and longer term solutions that promote financial wellness through access to benefits and resources. We are filled of gratitude, knowing the pantries of those struggling to put food on the table will be filled as well. Thanks Bank of America!
Our warehouse was bustling with volunteers last Friday morning and we had some special guests filling orders in our distribution area. The National At-Home Dad Network hosted their 18th annual convention right here in Denver over the weekend. Several members came from across the country and wanted to give back while they were here. We had a chance to visit with Richard Blake who organized the volunteer activity.
Here’s a big THANK YOU to these terrific volunteers for being caring parents and for making a difference for the hungry in our community! We appreciate you lending a hand in our warehouse during your visit to Denver.
Interested in volunteering with FBR? Please visit our volunteer page to learn more!
Contributions to Holiday Fund Drive for 9Cares Colorado Shares and King Soopers Make Easter Brighter
3:26 PM on Friday, March 29th, 2013No Comments
What a fun and busy day we've had at Food Bank of the Rockies! Because of the generosity of everyone who contributed funds at King Soopers to 9Cares Colorado Shares last fall, we were able to distribute nearly 91,000 pounds of food to 95 local hunger relief agencies! Thank you!!
And another big thank you goes out to all the staff and volunteers who went over and above their normal tasks to help get all those orders pulled and loaded in 5 hours!
We are so blessed to live in such a generous community.
4:01 PM on Wednesday, March 27th, 2013No Comments
If you're just now meeting Derek McKee, you're in for a treat. Derek, a senior at Heritage High School, has been taking the magic world by storm and gets to rub elbows with famous folks like Lance Burton and David Blaine. Travelling the world, sharing his magic and positive energy, he's already an acclaimed, award-winning magician. But when you meet him, what really stands out about Derek is his genuine, down-to-earth compassion for those who are less fortunate. He'll tell you about how he spent a scary night on skid row with a team of people to gain a deeper understanding of what it's like to be homeless. He'll talk about the work he does as a board member with Little Red Wagon Foundation and some of the homeless teens he's met while helping this organization. It's obvious he really cares about making the world a better place.
And today, he's decided to raise awareness for teen homelessness and hunger in Denver. He's living downtown on the 16th Street Mall, spending 6 nights and 7 days in a homemade plexiglass box. His efforts will provide non-perishable food for Food Bank of the Rockies and funds for Little Red Wagon Foundation.
If you'd like to support Derek, please stop by his temporary home at 16th and Glenarm Place. Bring a can of food and share a smile. You might even be treated to a magic trick or two for your kindness. Derek plans to live in the box until next Wednesday morning. Follow his journey on Twitter, #247Denver, @Derek_McKee.
Brandy works in our Nutrition Network and did a remarkable job coordinating last summer's food program for kids. Working with a very tight deadline, she completed all the paperwork, staff and volunteer training, set-up, distribution and monitoring to get 25 additional summer food sites up and running. Her efforts to help fill more hungry tummies were deservedly recognized by the Colorado Department of Education who nominated Brandy for the White House Champion of Change Award. Brand has been very modest about this nomination.
“Even though it was a lot of work to get the additional sites set up, it was worth it,” says Brandy. “I have three kids and can’t imagine them without a meal. I’m just doing my job. It’s all about opening more meal sites so more kids can eat.”
Brandy asked a little girl at one of the sites what she liked best about her lunch. The little girl told her she liked the milk because “we don’t have milk at home.” Stories like this keep Brandy and her team motivated.
Brandy was recently promoted to Distribution Supervisor for all Nutrition Network programs. She has a lot of new tasks on her plate, but we’re sure she can handle it. Congratulations Brandy, on this outstanding nomination and your new position. We appreciate you!