How It Started
The ShopRite organization recognized the pervasive problem of hunger experienced by so many people right in the neighborhoods served by their stores. It’s a problem that not only exists during the holiday season, when attention is focused on charitable giving, but it also exists throughout the year. ShopRite had already been helping to fight the problem of hunger for more than 20 years through its support of the Feeding America network (formerly America’s Second Harvest) and through participation in the Checkout Hunger program, but wanted to do more.
In 1999, ShopRite conceived and began its ShopRite Partners In Caring program, a year-round, community based hunger fighting initiative. With the help of more than 50 manufacturers, the program is committed to helping to feed and meet the nutritional needs of families and the elderly who may otherwise go without. These generous companies are a major reason why ShopRite Partners In Caring has been such a success.
Today, the ShopRite Partners In Caring program supports 23 regional food banks and more than 1,400 charitable agencies with food or meal components. With a $2 million annual donation, more than $20 million has been donated since 1999 in the fight against hunger.
How It Works
Companies that have joined ShopRite in the fight against hunger are marked in stores with the ShopRite Partners In Caring shelf label. By choosing these products, ShopRite customers support manufacturers who contribute to the program.
Each of the 217 ShopRite stores in the six states that ShopRite serves (New York, New Jersey, Delaware, Pennsylvania, Connecticut and Maryland) selects qualified local organizations to benefit from the program. These local food charities use their designated funds to acquire supplies at a food bank.
Who Is Served
More than 36 million Americans go to bed hungry every night – 12 million of them are children. They could be your neighbors, people you know in the community or maybe somebody you said “hello” to this morning. ShopRite is committed to making a difference in the lives of its neighbors. That’s why ShopRite Partners In Caring dollars ultimately service a variety of organizations with feeding capabilities including emergency food pantries, soup kitchens, homeless shelters, child care centers, battered women’s shelters, senior programs, drug rehab centers, programs for the mentally and physically disabled, after school programs and other organizations that support those in need in ShopRite communities.
Every time a customer purchases products with the ShopRite Partners In Caring shelf tag, they support the brands that support the fight against hunger. At ShopRite, customers are not just filling a grocery bag; they are helping to fill empty bowls for thousands of hungry families in your community.
ShopRite Partners In Caring is the Recipient of the Following Awards – among others:
· Good Neighbor Award – Food Marketing Institute (FMI)
· Retailer of the Year Award – America’s Second Harvest/Feeding America
· Outstanding Achievement Award – Hudson Valley Food Bank
· Crystal Toque Award – Philadelphia and South Jersey
· Outstanding Spirit Award – Monmouth and Ocean County Food Bank
· Connecticut Food Bank – Bill Liddell Award
· Corporate Excellence Award – Food Bank for New York City
For more on the program, visit www.ShopRitePartnersInCaring.org
Facts About Hunger in America
· More than 36 million Americans (11 percent of U.S. households) suffer from food insecurity
o Food insecurity is when you are unsure when or what your next meal will be
· Statewide food insecurity rates in the ShopRite area are:
o New Jersey – 7.7%
o Delaware – 7.8%
o Maryland – 9.5%
o Connecticut – 8.6%
o Pennsylvania – 10%
o New York – 9.8%
· More than 12 million children are growing up hungry
· Nearly 2 million seniors suffer from food insecurity
· During 2007, nearly 18 million children received free or reduced lunch
· There are many complications of hunger, especially for children, including:
o Weakened immune systems
o Cognitive and behavioral development problems; can cause irritability, fatigue and difficulty concentrating in younger children. Also proven to cause depression in some teenagers
o Slow or unusual development in areas such as speaking, behavior and movement
· A $1 donation can purchase 10 pounds of food from a food bank
*Facts are as reported by Feeding America
NOTE FROM BILL : General Mills and ShopRite will donate one box of cereal to a food bank in ShopRite’s trading area for the first 30 people who comment on this post.