Channel One Regional Food Bank and Open Your Heart to the Hungry and Homeless announce the Seventh Annual Food Shelf Challenge Grant. Open Your Heart to the Hungry and Homeless will proportionally match donations to Channel One during the month of July, up to $5,000. The more funds Channel One raises in July, the larger the matching grant from Open Your Heart to the Hungry and Homeless will be. In 2016, Minnesota food shelves raised over $1,200,000 with this grant and hope to raise even more this year.

Minnesota summers were made for trips to the cabin, boat rides on the lake, and farmers market outings, not food shelf visits. But that is the reality for thousands of Minnesotans. Children are home from school and the family budget is tight. Channel One helps provide nutritious fruits and vegetables to these families and needs your help this summer. Donations given in July will be proportionally matched by Open Your Heart to the Hungry and Homeless to help end hunger in our area.

Since 1986, Open Your Heart to the Hungry and Homeless has targeted millions of dollars to strategically fight hunger in Minnesota. Open Your Heart funds the purchase and transfer of more than one million pounds of fresh produce, meat, and dairy products to Minnesota food shelves every year.

Food Shelves Fill Empty Plates Every Summer

Food shelves in Minnesota help individuals, families, and seniors get the nutritious food they need but cannot afford to purchase on their own. Summer is especially stressful for both families with children and the food shelves that serve them. In 2016, children made 317,101 visits to food shelves in the summer months. When kids are home for the summer, they are missing out on school meals and food shelves help fill that gap.

“We see such a large increase in people visiting the food shelf during the summer months,” said Linda Lovik, Channel One Regional Food Bank Interim Director. “Kids are out of school, and families are struggling to put enough food on the table. This match opportunity comes at a crucial time, when our services are in the highest demand.”