Record ‘Partnership’ Food Drive Will Help Meet Huge Increase in Need
Held at nine sites in Columbia, Jefferson City, Moberly and Fulton, the all-day benefit raised at least $62,000 and over 14,000 pounds of food. These sums topped the previous money and food records set at the 2006 and 2012 drives, respectively.
“In this time of giving thanks, we are so blessed to have the support and generosity of so many people in mid-Missouri,” Food Bank Executive Director Peggy Kirkpatrick said after the drive. “Through your partnership, we will feed thousands of people in the coming weeks and months.”
The Food Bank faces stark challenges posed by an ever-growing number of food clients. Kirkpatrick said The Food Bank has seen sharp increases in the number of people getting food from its partner agency food pantries, including The Central Pantry in Columbia. There, the number of clients – the people who receive food monthly – has risen 12 percent in 12 months. In Boone County this year, there has been a 15 percent increase in clients.
Since The Food Bank can purchase 15 pounds of food with each dollar it receives, Tuesday’s radiothon will help provide over 31 semi-truck loads of food for the hungry in Boone and 31 other counties in mid- and northeastern Missouri. So far this year, the hunger relief agency has provided over 33 million pounds of food.
Major sponsors for Partnership Against Hunger 2013 were Cumulus Broadcasting, Schnucks Supermarkets, Walmart Supercenters, and KOMU-8 TV. Volunteers braved 18-degree cold at outdoor donation sites at Walmarts in Columbia, Jefferson City, Moberly and Fulton, and Schnucks locations in Jefferson City and Columbia.
Partnership Against Hunger began in 2002 with a single KFRU Radio remote broadcast at Schnucks in Columbia. Since it began, the food and fund drive has accounted for over $575,000 and 95,000 pounds of food.