VENICE, FL - All Faiths Food Bank in Sarasota has a 22,000-square-foot facility lined with shelves but the cupboards are nearly bare according to Sandra Frank, Executive Director. Newspapers and television stations have issued urgent appeals for donations and pastors are begging their parishioners—those who can afford to do so—to make a donation. Farmers and Hunters Feeding the Hungry (FHFH) has taken action to help ease the problem, at least a little. The Gulf Coast Chapter of the not-for-profit organization has donated 450 pounds of ground beef, wrapped in five-pound packages, according to Melissa Kelly, a member of the Gulf Coast FHFH and Realtor® with Premier Sotheby's International Realty.
All Faiths Food Bank is distributing this meat, along with other food procured through donations, to 155 not-for-profit agencies that offer hunger relief in Sarasota and DeSoto counties. Those agencies in turn either hand out the food or use it to prepare hot meals for those they serve. The need is great. “We currently distribute 6 million pounds of food equating to 5.3 million meals every year,” Frank says. Of the people they serve, she says:
• 48% have at least one working member in their household.
• 38% are children.
• 16% are elderly who often have to choose between buying medicine or food.
“The beef is a very generous gift. We always have a waiting list for meat,” Frank says, adding that persons needing food should call 2-1-1 for the location of a distribution agency near them.
Farmers and Hunters Feeding the Hungry (FHFH) is an international outreach ministry of the people of God called upon to feed venison to the hungry. It uses cash donations to pay for processing venison and other meats donated by hunters and farmers, then distributes the meat to those in need. Members of the FHFH Gulf Coast Chapter include Melissa and R.G. “Kelly” Caldwell, Jr., (CEO and president of Caldwell Trust Company); and Gary and Missy Plum of Palmetto. To reach FHFH, call 941.725.1991.
The mission of All Faiths Food Bank is to feed those in need, reduce food waste, and educate the community about the issues of hunger and nutrition. Sandra Frank calls the FHFH donation a win-win because if helps both organizations fulfill their missions, benefiting hungry people in the area. To reach All Faiths Food Bank, call (941) 379-6333.