The Generosity of Local Donors: Making a Difference in the Lives of Hungry Children
Support from our local community helps to fuel the work that the Freestore Foodbank carries out each and every day. The Charles H. Dater Foundation is one of many community partners that help us to make a difference in the communities where we live and work. Since the mid-1800’s, philanthropic commitment to community has been a core value of the Dater family. Since 1987, the Foundation has supported the Freestore Foodbank’s efforts to serve those in need with a focus on assisting hungry children.
The generosity of the Dater Foundation plays a remarkable role in our Power Pack program. Power Packs are bags of nutritious food that the Freestore Foodbank provides to over 4,000 children in more than 95 participating schools each Friday during the school year. The Dater Foundation continues to be a strong supporter of the program as we work to ensure these children have something to eat over the weekend.
“While visiting the 1st grade class, a little boy started clapping when the volunteer entered the room,” says the Power Pack coordinator at South Avondale Elementary. “Power Packs are making a difference in the lives of these children, because many of them do not have the food to sustain them until they make it back on Monday morning.”
In an effort to continue to improve the quality of packs, the Freestore Foodbank is changing the makeup of each pack to include items high in protein, fiber and iron, as well as organic and minimally processed items for improved diversity and nutritional value. Our Power Packs will now contain approximately 12-15 kid-friendly, shelf-stable food items that are selected for nutritional value and ease of preparation such as sun butter, whole grain cereals, fruit and vegetable juices, chickpeas, sunflower seeds, apple oatmeal bars, complete pasta meals and other healthy choices. Initial tests of these new packs have already shown positive reactions from children and their families.
“We decided to introduce the new Power Pack (brown bag) to our entire student body at an assembly” explained one of our pilot schools. “We displayed both the old and new Power Packs and advertised the new one as the new and improved version…. It was a tremendous success and the children were very excited to receive the new packs. The children really enjoy the new items in the pack!” With the support of the Dater Foundation and other community partners, we are working together to give hope to thousands of children who need our help. The Dater Foundation maintains strong ties to our community and since its founding in 1985 has funded nearly 400 charitable organizations focused on education, social services, the arts, healthcare and community needs. To learn more about the Dater Foundation visit their website.