Panera Bread of Iowa and its customers raise over $30,000 to alleviate hunger
Over the course of 2015, Panera Bread of Iowa and its customers partnered to raise $30,910.40 in cash donations for local Feeding America member food banks across Iowa, who were able to translate these cash donations into the equivalent of more than 123,000 meals for those in need.
Panera Bread of Iowa’s 19 bakery-cafes collect change and other cash donations at their registers each day on behalf of the local Feeding America food bank serving the market. Panera Bread of Iowa then provides a 10 percent matching donation on all cash donations made.
Additionally, the bakery-cafes host a fundraising drive each September on Hunger Action Day where 20 percent of sales associated with the fundraiser are donated back to the local food bank partners.
At the end of the 2015 fiscal year, cash donations in the following amounts were made to these area Feeding America member food banks:
- $12,793.39 – Food Bank of Iowa, Des Moines
- $7,123.44 – River Bend Foodbank, Davenport
- $7,089.07 – HACAP Food Reservoir, Hiawatha
- $3,494.86 – Northeast Iowa Food Bank, Waterloo
- $409.65 – St. Stephen’s Food Bank, Dubuque
In addition to the annual cash donations, Panera Bread of Iowa donates all of its unsold bread and bakery items each day to more than 85 local hunger relief agencies across Iowa and Illinois through its Day-End Dough-Nation program.
For more information about the hunger-relief efforts of Panera Bread of Iowa, please contact Mr. John Kauffman at firstname.lastname@example.org or 319-361-6091. For more information about the Feeding America food banks in Iowa, please contact Mr. Cory Berkenes at email@example.com or 319-290-5596.
Boone students catalyze community hunger network
This spring, Boone High School students held their own Hunger Summit with leaders from the World Food Prize, Whispering Roots, Crop Production Services, and the Outreach Program participating. Students bagged 20,000 meals as they rotated to different speakers on the subject of food insecurity locally and worldwide.
The Hunger Summit had its origins in the 2014 Boone Community Hunger Banquet.
In 2014, a Boone high school senior worked with Iowa-based Outreach Program, the school’s talented and gifted coordinator, and eighth-grade students to organize a community hunger banquet raising awareness and funds for community development in Tanzania. About 75 people battled winter weather to attend the Boone Hunger Banquet, where they participated in an educational hunger simulation, learned about Outreach and its work in Tanzania, and raised $756 to send Tanzanian children to school and equip a kitchen at a newly built children’s feeding center in Tanzania.
Students and adults from the community also discussed next steps, and there was substantial interest in sponsoring an Outreach Program meal-packaging event to provide meals for hungry people in the Boone area and overseas. This interest laid the foundation for the 2016 Hunger Summit and meal packaging event.
An important contributor to the success of the Boone Community Hunger Banquet was the emphasis on partnerships. Boone high school student-organizers worked closely with Outreach, and their decision to mentor eighth grade students supported the middle school’s service-learning and citizenship curriculum.
These connections led to the launch of the Boone Hunger Coalition organization in Boone County, which is now working collectively to bring services to residents of the community who are food insecure.
In addition, connections have been made to corporate businesses and non-profits who are collaborating with the 7-12th grade Boone students in ways that are extending the Science curriculum in Aquaponics. The program will be a part of the Life Sciences curriculum starting in the Fall of 2016.
For more information about Boone High School or the Boone Hunger Coalition, please contact Ms. Peggy Watkins at firstname.lastname@example.org or 515-230-4233.
Photo Credits: Panera Bread donation boxes, Boone students at Hunger Banquet, Outreach Program meals