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Helping to bring affordable and nutritious food to communities

Helping to bring affordable and nutritious food to communities

by | Sep 21, 2018 | 0 comments

Through employee support, nonprofit enhances its hunger relief plan to bring affordable and nutritious food closer to communities

Our employees have a strong tradition and history of supporting nonprofits in their communities. Every year, they answer the call to give back in various ways, including financial support and participation in special fundraising events that benefit nonprofits across our service area. Last year alone, our employees raised $4.7 million to help nonprofits such as CROS Ministries.

CROS Ministries currently operates six food pantries in Palm Beach County and one in Indiantown in Martin County. In 2017, 66,570 individuals received bags of food from CROS Ministries food pantries, 35% of whom were children. Through the support of United Way of Palm Beach County and our employees’ financial giving, the nonprofit received an opportunity to open an eighth food pantry – this time on wheels and will serve multiple locations.

This mobile food “choice” pantry, meaning pantry clients will be able to choose what foods they would like to go into their bags instead of receiving a pre-made bag full of food staples, will:

  • Increase access and availability of nutritious food to Central/Western Palm Beach County, which has been identified by Palm Beach County’s Hunger Relief Plan as an area high in food insecurity
  • Increase capacity to serve multiple-cities where barriers for hungry residents include transportation, physical/medical conditions and hours to pantry operations
  • Address one of the Hunger Relief Plan’s critical goals – to increase nutritious food distribution to food deserts in Palm Beach County. A food desert is an area, often with residents with low income, that has limited access to affordable and nutritious food
  • Offer food distribution during nontraditional hours, including early evenings and weekends
  • Offer food distribution at or close to 55 and older communities with high rates of food insecurity

Our employees have also enjoyed participating in CROS Gleaning, a produce recovery operation in which CROS volunteers pick fresh fruits and vegetables from farmers’ fields, cull lines and donors’ backyards. This food would otherwise go to waste.

CROS Ministries serves the hungry in Palm Beach and Martin counties through community collaborations. For 40 years, the nonprofit has served the most vulnerable in the Palm Beach and Martin counties by bringing together congregations, government entities, nonprofits, and the business community in the fight against hunger. It is through these collaborations, a strong board leadership and a capable staff that the organization is able to operate and sustain a widespread pantry program.

FPL volunteers pick fresh green peppers as part of CROS Ministries’ CROS Gleaning program.

Vice President of Business Management Rebecca Kujawa attends FPL’s nonprofit showcase during iPledge, My Choice campaign week, where employees can donate to any 501©(3) nonprofit organizations of their choice.

 

CROS Ministries clients receive a bag of groceries at one of the organization’s seven community food pantries.

About The Author

Pam Rauch

Pamela Rauch serves as vice president of External Affairs and Economic Development for FPL, where she is responsible for all local government relations, community relations and economic development for the company. An experienced attorney, Pam started her career at FPL as a senior attorney, eventually becoming part of that leadership team as Associate General Counsel, managing the Real Estate, Land Use and Environmental Group. She is actively engaged with the community and serves on numerous boards and committees.

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