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Food Fighting Year-Fround

11/15/2013

Food Fighting Year-Fround

11/15/2013

Days after a Seattle snowstorm shut down roads, schools and businesses, needy individuals were lining up around the block to get groceries and sack lunches at the Cherry Street Food Bank.

It was a reminder that needs don't stop, even when everything else does.

Food bank volunteering and donations always spike during the holidays. But giving tends to drop off in January and it stays that way for months, says Claire Acey of Northwest Harvest, which runs the Cherry Street Food Bank.

"The trick is getting people to remember that this is a year-round effort," Claire says. "People don't just get hungry at Thanksgiving."

The food bank, located in an old converted school gym and packed with sacks of rice and canned food, has nearly 6,500 people relying on its services each week. It needs about 15 to 20 volunteers a day just to keep things running smoothly. Those volunteers help keep costs low, and allow Northwest Harvest to put 93 cents of every $1 donated towards food and programming.

Vulcan employees have been supporting Northwest Harvest and Cherry Food Bank since 2009 through their “Food Fighters” program.

In 2011, Vulcan employees raised $38,521 for Northwest Harvest through various fundraisers, including a hotdog sale, a Ping-Pong tournament and an online auction. The Paul G. Allen Family Foundation matched donations dollar for dollar. The total amount raised was enough to provide about 350,000 nutritious meals to needy families in the region.

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