June 14, 2018 — BJ’s Wholesale Club today announced a $50,000 donation from the BJ’s Charitable Foundation to Feeding Tampa Bay, a Feeding America® member food bank. BJ’s donation will provide fresh, nutritious food to children across the region through Feeding Tampa’s Hunger-Free Summer Mobile Pantry Program.
“BJ’s is committed to nourishing our communities and helping families thrive, and we’re excited to support Feeding Tampa Bay’s Hunger-Free Summer Mobile Pantry Program,” said Kirk Saville, executive director, BJ’s Charitable Foundation. “Hunger-relief programs are crucial for children and families who lose access to school lunches in the summer. Through our partnership with Feeding America, we’re helping to provide access to fresh, healthy food to families when school is out for the summer.”
With BJ’s $50,000 grant, Feeding Tampa Bay will increase the number of mobile food pantries it operates to 114, enabling the food bank to reach more children and expand its efforts to mitigate childhood hunger.
“Feeding Tampa Bay tries to reach more families and children each year through our mobile pantry program,” said Thomas Mantz, executive director, Feeding Tampa Bay. “During the summer, child hunger spikes as students no longer receive their daily meals at school. With BJ’s generous support, we will be able to increase the number of healthy meals and snacks we distribute and increase our impact on child hunger this summer.”
During the school year, more than 22 million children receive free or reduced-price meals through the National School Lunch and Breakfast Programs. In the summer months, fewer than 4 million children receive free or reduced-priced meals through the USDA Summer Food Service Program. From mobile and school pantries to congregate meal sites in public areas like summer camps, the Feeding America network operates different program models to increase the number of meals provided to children over the summer.
Since 2009, BJ’s has provided ongoing support to Feeding America through the BJ’s Charitable Foundation and BJ’s Feeding Communities® program, helping local food banks successfully expand their programs to reach wider and more diverse audiences.
In addition to summer programming and capacity-building grants from the BJ’s Charitable Foundation, BJ’s has secured over 70 million pounds of donated food, including fresh produce, frozen meats and fish, baked goods and dairy items, and helped distribute 58 million meals to neighbors in need through the BJ’s Feeding Communities® program.
To learn more about the BJ’s, visit BJs.com.