Almost daily, a refrigerated box truck emblazoned with the words “Working together for hunger relief” makes a run across the Treasure Coast picking up and delivering fresh produce.
The truck is part of an enhanced supply chain at Treasure Coast Food Bank made possible with a $250,000 grant from Walmart. The Walmart Strategic Produce Investment Grant is intended to support Treasure Coast Food Bank’s efforts to increase the amount of high-quality produce getting into the hands of people who struggle with hunger.
“We’ve always had a goal of getting Florida-grown fresh produce to people who struggle with hunger,” said Judith Cruz, President and CEO of Treasure Coast Food Bank. “Making that happen requires refrigerated trucks, and refrigerated storage so fresh produce remains fresh until it’s in the hands of people who need it. Walmart understands the importance of the supply chain, and we’re thankful to be working together with Walmart for hunger relief.”
The refrigerated box truck is smaller than others in Treasure Coast Food Bank’s fleet, so it efficiently collects smaller allotments of produce that otherwise might go to waste. It’s also used to efficiently deliver allotments of produce and other perishable products to partner agencies.
The grant also paid for other fixtures and equipment, including 17 small refrigerators that were placed with partners across the Treasure Coast to create convenient produce access points.
The TC Food Bank also received a $10,000 donation from the Islamic Association of the Treasure Coast. The organization raised the money during Ramadan, the holy month of fasting and prayers, which ended Saturday. “During the month of Ramadan, we are encouraged to be more generous and give back to our community,” said Imam Derrick Peate. “In recognition that there are people not as fortunate as ourselves we decided to make this donation. Of course in times of COVID, this difficulty is compounded, so we decided to reach out with this gift to the community.”
“We want to thank the members of the Islamic Association of the Treasure Coast for providing this donation to us,” said Judith Cruz, President and CEO of Treasure Coast Food Bank. “There are always people in need of food, but the COVID-19 crisis has caused that need to rise significantly. This generous gift will provide more than 80,000 meals.”
ABOUT TREASURE COAST FOOD BANK
Treasure Coast Food Bank is the only food bank and largest hunger relief organization on Florida’s Treasure Coast, providing the community each year with millions of meals valued at more than $50 million through robust programs and in partnership with 400 charitable organizations in Indian River, St. Lucie, Martin, and Okeechobee counties. In addition to emergency food distribution, Treasure Coast Food Bank operates a full roster of direct service programs that not only solve the immediate problem of hunger, but help individuals and families gain long-term food security, better health outcomes, and self-sufficiency. Treasure Coast Food Bank is a member of Feeding America, the nationwide network of 200 food banks that leads the fight against hunger in the United States. For more information on Treasure Coast Food Bank, call 772.489.3034, log on to stophunger.org, visit our Facebook page at facebook.com/tcfoodbank, or follow us on Twitter at twitter.com/tcfoodbank.