More than 50,000 people go hungry every day in Houston, including 3,600 children. Their situations vary – some live at or below the poverty line, others earn too much to be considered impoverished and some are experiencing a temporary setback – but all are in need. Since 1982, the Houston Food Bank has worked to relieve hunger in Southeast Texas. It’s the largest source of food for nearly 600 hunger relief agencies in 18 counties, including church food pantries, homeless shelters, safe havens for the battered and abused, and nutrition sites for children and the elderly.
For the past six years, Bank of America has supported the Houston Food Bank through grant funding, including an unrestricted Neighborhood Builders grant of $200,000 in 2011 and a $40,000 grant in 2013 to provide 120,000 meals to the Houston community. Every dollar donated to the Food Bank can provide nine meals. Knowing that, Bank of America matches individual donations through its Give a Meal program. The bank also matches Houston employees’ donations to the Food Bank up to $5,000.
Hundreds of Bank of America employees also volunteer at the Houston Food Bank each year. Most recently, a group of 120 employees spent a December afternoon packing 2,340 boxes of food weighing 70,200 pounds – the equivalent of 58,500 meals. Beyond these efforts, Texas and Houston Market President Kim Ruth is serving her second year as co-chair of the Food Bank’s board and chair of key fundraising events for the organization.
“Before Bank of America provides volunteer or financial support to an organization, we first look at the organization’s impact,” said Ruth. “The Houston Food Bank is a critical component of Houston and the Southeast Texas region.” With support from companies like Bank of America, the Food Bank is entering its 32nd year and providing 64 million nutritious meals to more than 900,000 people annually.