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Doug Groendyke: The Road WarriorJanuary 12, 2016
Today, we shine the spotlight on a new employee, Doug Groendyke, Farm and Produce Donations Coordinator. We are thrilled about Doug and his solutions for knocking out the hunger problem in South Carolina.
Doug comes from New Jersey, bringing his grit, hustle and determination to the Palmetto State. Doug didn’t come here to chew bubble gum. He is always on the move! A “Road Warrior Against Hunger,” Doug travels all over the state reaching out to growers, wholesalers and manufacturers in our vast service area that supply tax-deductible donations of produce, meat, dairy, and poultry.
As Farm and Produce Donations Coordinator, Doug is firm about improving the food products that our clients need. We asked Doug about his goals for Harvest Hope. Doug replied, “I am going to visit every farm, road stand and farmers market in the 20 counties that we serve. I seek to build and strengthen those relationships.” By building these long term relationships, Harvest Hope will be provided with an abundance of quality produce. In turn, this will better serve our clients by providing them with more nutritious meals.
Doug also mentioned to us that everyone(including children and seniors) should eat their fruits and vegetables!
So basically, Doug rocks! We are psyched to have him as a part of the team. Welcome aboard!
Aziz Ansari tweets Harvest Hope Food BankDecember 28, 2015
The aftermath of the flood was a crazy time for us these past few months. One of the best uplifting moments we had was when Aziz Ansari tweeted out our website's donate link . This provided incredible motivation for us when we were working around the clock.
Recognition from a celeb like Aziz Ansari is a really big deal for Harvest Hope. He has over 8.5 million twitter followers! For those of you that are unfamiliar with Mr. Ansari and his work, he is a South Carolinian actor and comedian known for his appearance in the NBC television show Parks and Recreation. You can also check out his comedy series on Netflix called Master of None.
My Favorite Box Of CerealDecember 16, 2015
For outstanding effort to rebuild and reclaim stability in South Carolina, a big "shout out" to more than 60 bloggers hailing from cities near and far and General Mills. Together they rallied to help donate 1,000+ boxes of cereal to Harvest Hope Food Bank. Behold the power of the internet!
The cereal, donated was used in “disaster boxes” that Harvest Hope expedited to help families experiencing loss and to the rebuilding of the region in the wake of the catastrophic flooding.
What makes this donation really unique is that each blogger agreed to share, with the General Mills cereal team, a meaningful commitment or a personal promise that is important to their lives, their family, social community and/or livelihood. General Mills took the bloggers' mantra and transformed it into a very creative and engaging piece of digital artwork.
Check out some of the bloggers and the artwork below:
General Mills, then, graciously donated cases of Kix, Cheerios and Honey Nut Cheerios in the name of the bloggers to Harvest Hope Food Bank totaling the 1,000+ boxes. The gesture is in celebration of General Mills’ ongoing commitment to people in the community and to continuing to make its cereals better with the removal of artificial flavors and colors from artificial sources.
Since October 5, Harvest Hope continues to assist people negatively impacted by the floods. We have provided food and water equal to 2.3 million meals to flood victims. We are also dispatching disaster mobile food pantries in our state to remote areas that are dearth of basic necessities.
At one of Harvest Hope's disaster mobile food pantries, a needy family came through getting a disaster relief box. As they were waiting to talk to a social worker regarding housing issues, their little boy opened up his box and saw a box of cereal. He was very excited and pulled it out showing his parents the cereal saying it was one of his favorites. It was a very sweet touching moment. Don't you agree? We certainly thought so.
Cereal is a hot item and is needed by all food banks across the country for the clients we serve like that little boy. The gift comes at a particularly important time as nutritional comfort food for poverty stricken people impacted in such horrible ways by the flooding. This holiday season has been particularly taxing on our food supplies because of the flooding. I hope all the participating bloggers understand how totally AWESOME this donation was, how it is helping our community and how excited we are!!!
Much thanks and many kudos to the motivated army of bloggers and General Mills during the upcoming holiday season for your efforts towards supporting our cause. For all of the Feeding America food banks, you are a rock solid donor by helping us year-round. Thank all of you for understanding that hunger is always a disaster and cereal products are always a comfort!