Family finds security in School-Based Pantry


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by Willie Matis

One of the mothers of a school family came to me in tears.

Her husband had lost his job and has been unable to find work. She just took on a minimum wage job to help cover the bills, and she said that she has never asked for any assistance. She couldn’t think of anywhere else to turn.

I helped her with her request for uniforms, and then I asked if she was in need of food. At first she was reluctant, but I quickly explained that utilizing the pantry was like shopping. She agreed. After shopping, she again burst into tears, hugged me tight, and said what a blessing the food pantry items were to her family.

The School-Based Pantry Program has now extended into 50 locations in all 21 counties served by Gleaners. Staff and teachers at the schools share stories very similar to the one above quite often. One thing we notice is that teachers are able to connect more with families in need when they have the resources to provide food.

Thank you to all who have supported Gleaners. Because of you, our School-Based Pantry Program was able to expand, meaning many more students will be able to focus on their studies this school year rather than working to help their families.

#HungerAction Month comes to a close next Tuesday, September 30th; however, there are plenty of ways to stay involved.

1) Vote for Gleaners This will give Gleaners a chance at $60,000 to be put right back into your neighborhoods.

2) TRIPLE YOUR GIFT Your $1 will be matched with $2 from Bank of America. Triple your gift and triple your impact today.

Be the difference. Today.

Be the difference. Today.

Only Chips for Dinner


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by Willie Matis

We are in the last full week of #HungerAction Month. All of the going orange, all of the sharing of support, and all of the action… what is it for?

I had breakfast with a student yesterday morning who, unfortunately, is living in a motel with her mom. I could see that she was very, very hungry. When I asked her what she had for dinner the night before, her reply was, “Chips.” I was able to find her some additional breakfast food that day. She was eating so fast… it broke my heart.

I am eager to get BackSacks up and running again. I can’t tell you how much I appreciate Gleaners, and all they do for our children.I wish all the staff and volunteers and donors could see how much the food means to the kids. It is a blessing to be able to be the one who distributes the BackSacks to the kids each Friday.

This story was submitted at the beginning of August by one of our BackSacks site coordinators. All of the going orange and hunger awareness is for the students like the one above. All of the sharing of support is so we can continue providing BackSacks to schools each Friday. All of the action is to make sure that our neighborhoods are stronger.

Thank you.

Thank you for your support during #HungerAction Month, but also, thanks to those who continue to provide support throughout the year. Hunger doesn’t know seasons, but the kids who receive BackSacks know someone cares.

2 More Ways to take #HungerAction before September’s end.

BoA-Give-A-Meal Fight-Hunger.-Spark-Change.

Hat tip to Connect2Help – Hunger is REAL


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by Willie Matis

Sitting down to write an intro to this great infographic from Connect2Help, I was thinking about what I could write. However, after re-reading the infographic, they give fantastic information about hunger in Indiana, stories they have heard, and concrete ways for you to help.

Any more writing would simply delay you in getting to the good stuff… Here you go!

Download the Connect2Help Food Report PDF here.

Halfway through HAM – Here are 2 ways to help take #HungerAction


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by Willie Matis

“Have you gone orange yet?” I keep asking people that. It’s still Hunger Action Month, people!

We had a great day at RTV6’s Hope-A-Thon raising over $31,000.

We had a fantastic Harvest Moon Gala this past Saturday.

But that doesn’t mean we stop taking action, people!

We can’t thank #TeamFightHunger enough. Everyone has been awesome all month, but we are only halfway done. I saw a quote just today, and I think it was Coach Kryzewski who said it (by the way, he’s the head coach of the USA Men’s Basketball team who just won the world championship). He said…

Start strong. Finish stronger.

Here is how you can help in 2 ways… TODAY.


One vote per day, every day until October 5th. That’s all we ask. You can set up a reminder on your Calendar by clicking right here!!

The top 50 food banks, which receive the most votes from across the country, will each receive $60,000. Your votes can help make that happen for Gleaners and hungry Hoosiers in central and southeast Indiana. VOTE NOW!


Make your dollar stretch even further. When you donate at the link above, Bank of America will match each dollar donated 2-to-1. That means you give $100, Bank of America gives $200, and that isto $300 for Gleaners and 900 meals for hungry Hoosiers.

Give today! And can you do us a favor and tell your friends on Twitter about it? Click here to send out a tweet asking people to TRIPLE THEIR GIFT to help Hoosiers in central and southeast Indiana. Thanks.

Hunger Action Month has been a whirlwind at Gleaners, and that is a testament to how much you are doing for those most in need in your neighborhood. You are providing hope for every future. Futures like Kris’s seen below in this quick video.

Help by participating in both ways described above.

#OABestDays – One America’s Inaugural Week of Caring at Gleaners


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by Willie Matis

This week, the food bank has been buzzing. Many, many volunteer groups in and out. Gearing up for Hunger Action Month and more!

Not to mention our first ever ONLINE ONLY AUCTION for a pre-Harvest Moon Gala! Check it out if you haven’t already.

One thing that has been very fun going on here in the warehouse is the INAUGURAL One America Week of Caring. Gleaners has had the privilege of hosting over 450 One America employees to help inspect and sort food, repackage meat, work in the cooler, and more.

We had a chance to catch up with One America’s CEO, Scott Davison, and here is what he had to say about #OAbestdays.

A huge shoutout goes to every one of the One America employees who chose to take time out of their work schedules to help fight hunger right here in Indiana.

Would you like to explore the opportunity of having your company come out to volunteer? Maybe just your department for some team building? Learn more on our volunteer page.


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