Did you know that one in five American children are at risk for going to bed hungry? It's very hard for children to reach their full potential when they are going to bed with food on their minds. Hershey has partnered with Feeding America and its U.S. Sales Team to help feed hungry kids in its local neighborhoods across America.
Hershey recognizes that children have the best opportunity to thrive when they have access to nutritious food that helps them focus on their studies, rather than their stomachs. Nourishing Minds is Hershey's answer to the local, regional and global challenge to provide basic nutrition to all children so that they can learn and grow.
Feeding America is a critical partner to Hershey's Nourishing Minds platform. Not having enough of the right kinds of food can have serious implications for a child's physical and mental health – meaning that kids will miss more school and the ones who attend class are more likely to have concentration and behavioral issues. Through Hershey's support of Feeding America, the company is providing nutritious food to kids outside of school hours, so every child can focus on learning, playing, socializing and meeting their full potential.
It is important for us to remember that children in our own communities are food insecure. Did you know that in the area where Hershey's global headquarters is located, 1 in 5 children do not know where their next meal will come from?
To help make a difference in Hershey's local communities, the company's partnership with Feeding America includes financial support for six food banks in key sales districts as well as volunteering at local food banks. Hershey's efforts target:
Hershey Sales District Gives Back at the Central Pennsylvania Food Bank: District Sales Manager (DSM) Andrew Sullivan and his team joined other colleagues from the Northeast region to volunteer at the Central Pennsylvania Food Bank shortly after Hershey partnered with Feeding America.
During their volunteer event they packed and sorted meals. In addition to the great support the sales team members provided, the Central Pennsylvania Food Bank deployed their Nourishing Minds grant to support a School Pantry at Thomas Holtzman Elementary School. This grant was instrumental in upgrading the school's cold-storage capacity, which enabled them to increase the distribution of highly nutritious, perishable items like produce, fresh milk, protein and eggs.
Bentonville Sales District Volunteers at Northwest Arkansas Food Bank: The Bentonville sales district volunteered in August at the Northwest Arkansas Food Bank where they sorted and packed meals as well as assisted with administrative tasks. Additionally, Hershey's grant provided the Northwest Arkansas Food Bank with 9,315 pounds of food within just six months.
Cincinnati Sales District Supports Freestore Foodbank: The district participated in a community service activity in December at the Freestore Food Bank in Norwood. During this event, volunteers spent hours assembling "Power Packs" that are given to kids so they have something to eat over the weekends. These packs provide 15 food items like Sunbutter spread, roasted chickpeas, low-sugar cereal, fruit and vegetable juices, oatmeal bars, sunflower seeds, complete pasta dishes and more.
Dallas Sales District Gives Back: The Nourishing Minds grant has provide 12,684 pounds of nutritious food in the first six months of the program. Additionally, the Dallas sales district teamed up to volunteer at a community garden where they harvested vegetables and spices, which went to a local church who gives to those in need.
"It was great giving back to our community and we look forward to another CSR event soon," said Beth Vonderbrink about her experience at the Freestore Foodbank.