Walmart Partnership Fights Hunger
This year Walmart is celebrating the 10th year of Fight Hunger. Spark Change. campaign. The campaign has generated more than $165 million for Feeding America and local food banks such as the Food Bank of Eastern Oklahoma.
Did you know that in addition to their campaign, local Walmart and Sam’s Club stores donate to food banks and their partner agencies through the Retail Donations Program throughout the year?
“Walmart is a national partner and all their stores donate to local food banks including our Food Bank. They help us serve others by adding fresh proteins and produce into the mix of foods provided through our network of Partner Agency pantries,” said Willa Steelman, Retail and Donations Manager at the Food Bank of Eastern Oklahoma.
The Food Bank of Eastern Oklahoma partners with Walmart and Sam’s Club stores to distribute fresh food to local communities in the 24-county service area.
One of the Food Bank of Eastern Oklahoma’s Drivers David Reneau drives to the Walmart and Sam’s Club stores in Owasso five days a week as part of his route to collect donated food and deliver it to a Food Bank Partner Agency, Owasso Community Resources.
“It’s essential,” said Randy Cowling, Executive Director of Owasso Community Resources speaking about the donations. “Since the first of the year, we received 110,000 pounds of food from Walmart and Sam’s Club,” said Cowling. “We are really pleased with the nutritious produce that we get. About 50 percent of what we get from Walmart and Sam’s Club is produce.”
Walmart says they believe that every family deserves access to healthy options, which is why they have several programs to provide affordable, healthy food. You can see this every time a delivery happens.
“Walmart is about community involvement – it’s amazing that the local Walmart helps local people,” said James Acuff, Walmart Store Lead.
Cowling was happy to see the fresh foods being delivered to the agency. He said, “David has got a pallet of bananas today! Two days ago, we had a pallet of grapes.” Cowling expected about 50 families for that afternoon’s food distribution. The day’s delivery was collected and distributed the same day, allowing families access to fresh foods in their local community. This is accomplished because of the partnerships between Walmart, Sam’s Club, Food Bank of Eastern Oklahoma, and Owasso Family Resources.