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Walmart Volunteers Join Food Bank in Fight Against Hunger

More Than 200 Employees Pack Food to Feed Hungry Oklahomans

April 18, 2011

OKLAHOMA CITY - The Regional Food Bank of Oklahoma’s Volunteer center was buzzing with more than 200 Walmart employees volunteering for the Walmart Day of Service.

Volunteers packed 76,381 pounds of food, which will provide 58,754 meals for hungry Oklahomans in 53 central and western Oklahoma counties.  The Walmart Day of Service event started in 2007, and in the past year more than 300 volunteers have packed nearly 100,000 pounds of food to help feed their hungry neighbors in need.

“Walmart’s goal is to continue to support the Regional Food Bank and its mission,” said James Pelletier, Walmart store manager. The need for food is greater and it’s our hope that we can help alleviate the need in our cOmmunity.”

The Walmart Day of Service is part of the Volunteerism Always Pays program, which encourages employees to volunteer for nonprofit organizations. Organizations that benefit from the program receive grants of up to $25,000. Last year, the Regional Food Bank received a grant of $16,000 through the program.

Recently, Walmart has increased its efforts to end hunger in America. Last year, Walmart announced it would pledge $2 billion as part of the “Fighting Hunger Together” campaign.  The campaign is a five year initiative that includes grants totaling $250 million to support hunger relief organizations at the national, state and local levels.

Volunteers are the lifeblood of the Regional Food Bank. Last year, volunteers dedicated more than 64,000 hours of volunteer service to the Regional Food Bank, saving the organization $1 million in costs.  With the rise of fuel and food prices in recent weeks, the Regional Food Bank is spending more to continue its day to day operations, making the need for volunteers even more important.

The Regional Food Bank’s volunteer center is open from 9 a.m. to noon and 1 to 4 p.m. Monday through Saturday and is also open on Sundays by appointment.  Evening volunteer opportunities are available on Thursday evenings from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. through Rock ‘N Box.  The Rock ‘N Box night provides open volunteer opportunities to the public and includes a variety of fun activities for volunteers, ranging from live musical entertainment to comedy nights.

To learn more about volunteering visit regionalfoodbank.org. To schedule a volunteer opportunity contact Jamie Treadaway, volunteer coordinator, at 405.600.3154 or jtreadaway@regionalfoodbank.org.

The Regional Food Bank of Oklahoma is a private, 501(c) (3) nonprofit organization that acts as a link through which the food industry and community may donate food and other goods. The products are then distributed to nearly 700 schools and charitable feeding programs in 53 central and western Oklahoma counties. In the last fiscal year, the Food Bank distributed 36.5 million pounds of food and product to help the charitable community effectively feed people in need. Since its inception in 1980, the Regional Food Bank has distributed more than 389.5 million pounds of food to feed Oklahoma’s hungry.  Visit regionalfoodbank.org to see the new counter that tracks the pounds and meals distributed every second.

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