Bentonville, Ark. — Walmart and its philanthropic arm, the Walmart Foundation, were busy working alongside notable food companies in April, as part of the corporation’s Fighting Hunger Together Initiative.
Between April 1 and April 30, more than 443,000 votes were cast for the more than 300 eligible Feeding America food banks and partner agencies as part of the campaign, which fights hunger in local communities.
Walmart set up a landing page on its website where customers were able to vote for eligible organizations. As a result, 100 food banks and partner feeding agencies won a total of $3 million in grants, provided by the discount retailer this spring. The funds will be distributed by Feeding America, the nation's leading hunger relief organization. These grants will help support a number of programs, including local backpack programs that provide vital meals to children when they are out of school and community gardens that teach families how to grow their own healthy foods.
Campbell’s Soup, ConAgra Foods, Dr Pepper Snapple Group, General Mills, Kraft Foods Group, Kellogg Company, Mondelez International, Nestlé USA, PepsiCo and Unilever all participated in the campaign.
“We hope that the organizations benefitting from these funds will be able to continue and expand the positive work they are doing in local communities,” said Julie Gehrki, senior director of the Walmart Foundation. “We want to thank all those who participated in this campaign for their commitment to hunger relief, and we hope that the impact of the grant dollars we award will combine with new volunteers and greater public awareness of this issue to make a lasting impact in communities throughout the country.”
With the help of ConAgra Foods, General Mills and Kellogg Company, Walmart was able to generate an additional 136,000 meals for Feeding America food banks through local market food drive events. Joining the General Mills event in Atlanta was country music artist Thomas Rhett, meanwhile in Nashville, Emmy Award-winning analyst for ESPN's College GameDay, Kirk Herbstreit, partnered with Walmart and Kellogg.
The Fighting Hunger Together initiative is part of Walmart’s and its foundation’s $2 billion commitment through 2015 to fight hunger. As a part of this commitment, the corporation and its foundation pledged to donate more than 1.1 billion pounds of food from its stores, distribution centers and Sam’s Club locations, valued at $1.75 billion, as well as $250 million in grants to support hunger relief organizations.