Look What Four 5th Graders Can Accomplish!

IMG_0061

Teachers from Brown International School reached out to us with four students wanting to learn about hunger and help those in need in our community.

At first the students were going to host a food drive.  After researching our website, touring our facility and learning about our Quarters for Kids campaign, part of the Kung Food Fighters® Kids Club, and how 25 cents contributed to FBR becomes a meal, they decided to collect quarters (and dollars) instead.  Over just a few weeks, these four enthusiastic kids raised enough money to provide 667 meals (the equivalent of 833 lbs) for kids and families in need!

Three of the four students stopped by to bring in their contribution and took a few minutes to tell us what they learned. They even made a video about their experience for the class.

We love it when kids want to help others and learn about hunger!  If your group, class or family would like to take a tour and help us fight hunger and feed hope, please visit our Kung Food Fighters® Kids Club page and reach out to us, kidsclub@foodbankrockies.org. We’d love to have you visit!

Ethan Celebrates His Birthday Feeding Hope

Ethan just turned 7. And like many 7 year olds, he had a birthday party, complete with laser tag and go cart racing.  But one thing was a bit different at Ethan’s party – the gifts.  Instead of presents, Ethan asked his friends and family to contribute food to Food Bank of the Rockies. This wise young boy brought in 70 pounds of food for people in need, even more than his weight!   We had the pleasure of meeting him and his family and giving them a tour of FBR.

IMG_1859

We’re always impressed with the compassion of so many young children who want to help. That’s why we started the Kung Food Fighters® Kids Club.  We’ve got lots of ideas for ways to help fight hunger, perfect for kids from preschool to high school. Visit our club website page for activities to download and sign up to receive monthly e-newsletters with games and ideas.

Kids are Counting on Us This Summer

Kevin SeggelkeA Message from Kevin Seggelke, President & CEO, Food Bank of the Rockies

Summer is truly one of the best times to live in Colorado.  The weather is not too hot or humid, the sun shines almost every day and the city, plains and mountains are incredible places to enjoy the great outdoors and all our state has to offer. It’s also the time of year kids take a break from school. But sadly, for some children right here in our beautiful state, as the school year and school feeding programs end, summer also means the possibility of taking a break from having enough to eat.

12 year old Ryan is already feeling anxious. Soon, he and his 8 year old sister Sara will no longer be able eat school breakfast and lunch. He waits until the other kids leave the cafeteria and fills his pockets with apples, rolls, even packets of mayonnaise. The cafeteria worker notices and asks him if he’s hungry.

“I’m not hungry now,” he replied.  “I’m trying to stock up so me and my sister will have food to eat during the summer.”

Ryan is one of the nearly 1 in 4 Colorado kids living in a food insecure household.  Food insecurity is another way of saying these struggling families don’t always have enough money to eat - maybe only at the end of the month due to parents’ low wages, and in some cases, maybe all summer, due to circumstances far beyond a child’s control.

The cafeteria worker realized the seriousness of Ryan’s situation and told Ryan’s family about Food Bank of the Rockies’ Summer Food Service Program. This summer, Ryan and Sara will have a healthy lunch five days a week.

Boy_w-Sandwich

“Now I don’t have to worry about being hungry this summer and Sara will get lunches too. I can play ball and have a good time.” Ryan said with a big smile on his face.

At Food Bank of the Rockies, we’re proud to be the largest nonprofit sponsor of the Summer Food Service Program in Colorado.  We’ll be providing food for more than 70 locations this summer. Along with several public school districts, the USDA , our sister Feeding Colorado food banks, partner agencies and the Colorado Department of Education Office of School Nutrition, children around our service area and across the state can enjoy a nutritious lunch during the summer months.

No child should go hungry.  If you know a child in need, more information on summer meals and links to find nearby sites can be found here.

And if you are fortunate to have enough to eat this summer, can you help someone who is struggling?  Your gift will help children and their families receive healthy food all summer long.

Thank you and enjoy  a wonderful summer!

Kevin first name tight

 

Boy in the Box Again!

20140426_114545Derek McKee has been taking the magic world by storm and gets to rub elbows with famous folks like Lance Burton and David Blaine.  Traveling the world, sharing his magic and positive energy, he’s already an acclaimed, award-winning magician. 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.  It’s obvious he really cares about making the world a better place and he’s doing that by helping to raise awareness, food, and funds for Food Bank of the Rockies.

He once again lived downtown on the 16th Street Mall, spending nearly a week in a homemade plexiglass box.  His efforts provided non-perishable food and funds for Food Bank of the Rockies.

Thank you Derek for giving us a week of your time and magical energy to raise awareness and provide needed food to our hungry neighbors!

Imagine you’re in middle school, living with two disabled parents and an older brother who suffers from Lupus. Because no one is able to work, the small disability income your family lives on doesn't go very far. It's Friday, and for most kids the weekend means a break from school and time to play.  But for you and your family, it could mean a break from eating.

One 8th grader doesn’t have to imagine. Nalleli Valverde, a family liaison for Adams 12 Five Star schools, tells this young boy's story and talks about how important Totes of Hope ™ will be for him and many other children at her school and across the district. She works with too many families who struggle to have enough money to pay for necessities and she sees the effect hunger has on her students.

Food Bank of the Rockies will distribute 2,000 totes to Adams 12  Five Star Schools today and every Friday throughout the school year. We will also distribute thousands more at several sites throughout our service area. Nearly one in four kids in Colorado lives in a food insecure household. For them, this tote means being able to learn and grow without worrying about having enough to eat. For just $5, you can provide 20 meals for these struggling families. Can you help?

 

Totes Bring Hope to Adams 12 Five Star Schools

April 16th was a beautiful spring day in Adams County and not just because of the weather. 30 volunteers gathered at the Adams 12 Five Star School District to help feed hungry kids. Staff, family liaisons and parent volunteers rolled up their sleeves and filled bags with non-perishable, healthy, kid-friendly items supplied through Food Bank of the Rockies’ Totes of Hope™ - Children program.

This school district, like so many others in our community, has too many kids living in food insecure households. The food they receive will help them and their families have something to eat over the weekend when school meals are not available.

In two hours, these hard-working volunteers packed 2,000 totes! Food Bank of the Rockies is excited to welcome Adams 12 Five Star School District to our Totes of Hope program. None of this would be possible without our donors whose generous financial contributions allow us to fund this critical program.  Can you help us?

 

IMG_1601

Easter will be a lot brighter for our neighbors in need thanks to a huge delivery today from Colorado Egg Producers, Sparbo Farms, Moark Eggs and Rocky Mountain Eggs!  We received 259,200 eggs just in time for the Easter holiday.

IMG_1607

Thank you to our friends at Colorado Egg Producers for your kindness this spring and all year long!

#Surprisingly TCF!

 

TCF-best

Perhaps you caught a glimpse of the TCF team popping up around town surprising people with free lunch, free coffee and more. You may also have noticed Food Bank of the Rockies barrels at TCF branches throughout Metro Denver.

TCF Bank decided to make a difference in a different way last month, helping the hungry in Minneapolis, Detroit, Chicago and Denver. They contributed a dollar for each item donated and for each person using #SurprisinglyTCF on social media. And today, they brought in 1,000 food items and a check for FBR totaling $10,000!

“Today TCF Bank was honored and excited to present Food Bank of the Rockies with a $10,000 donation and over 1,000 nonperishable food items. I would like to thank our customers, employees, and the Denver community for helping us reach the goals of our TCF Surprisingly Rewarding Moments campaign and present these items today. Food Bank of the Rockies is a very important resource for the Denver community and we are very pleased and proud to support their great causes,” said Tim Meyer, Mountain West Branch Banking Director.

FBR is thrilled TCF Bank’s campaign was so successful and we’re excited to be able to share 40,000 meals for our hungry neighbors thanks to TCF Bank and their customers’ kindness. What a nice #Surprise!

IMG_1567

The TCF Team tours our Denver warehouse.

Hear Jeff’s Story and Help Stamp Out Hunger!

Jeff is a letter carrier and volunteering to head up Colorado's Branch 47 for the National Letter Carriers Association (NALC) Stamp Out Hunger Food Drive. Helping to fight hunger is important to Jeff and his enthusiam for the drive is delightful! Jeff has taken this drive to heart because he knows first hand what it's like to not always know where you're next meal will come from. His story moved us and we are greatful to him for sharing. He's working to make a difference because today in Colorado, one out of every seven people worries where they'll find their next meal. You can help!

Please leave a can or two or ten by your mailbox, Saturday, May 10 or make a secure contribution online - every $1 = five pounds of food for the drive! Stamp Out Hunger is the nation's largest food drive and we're hoping to make this year the best every!  Donations in the Denver Metro area will help FBR member agencies stock their shelves during the summer months. We appreciate your support.

And if you or someone you know needs help,  please visit our zip code locator or contact our office, 303.371.9250 for a referral.

It’s National Volunteer Week!

feature_test_1Food Bank of the Rockies celebrates National Volunteer Week every third week in April. It’s one of my favorite times at the food bank and a small way of saying “thank you” for these generous gifts of time. Volunteers make such a big difference, not only to FBR, but also to our partner agencies and neighbors in need.  Even though we take this special week to recognize our volunteers, for me and our staff, every day we operate is a day to be grateful for their contributions.

20120217_RMFB_050 (1)-Rhoda Shirk

Can we put a price on the value of volunteering?  According to Independent Sector’s most recent valuation, in Colorado, it’s $22.43 an hour.  Multiply that by the 143,617 hours volunteers contributed last year, and FBR volunteers are worth more than $3.22 million to our organization! Their hard work allows us to accomplish so much more than we could ever do on our own.  To us, volunteers are priceless!

One of the best parts of my day is visiting with our “regulars”. Day after day, week after week, year after year, we can depend on them to lend a hand. They pull orders, sort food, fill boxes, pack totes, help our drivers with USDA, Mobile Pantry and Nutrition Network distributions, assist in the office and prepare meals in our Community Kitchen. They are truly part of the FBR family and are some of the most wonderful people I’ve had the privilege of knowing.

IMG_0178

In addition to our regulars, we work with many kind-hearted individuals and groups who just want to help out for a short time. From students earning community service to corporate groups coming to give back while building camaraderie, we appreciate and welcome each and every one of them.

If you’ve never volunteered at FBR, we encourage you to give it a try.  Visit our website or give us a call to learn how you might be able to help. For everyone who has dedicated time to help us fight hunger, thank you. We salute your efforts!

 

Kevin first name tight