FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WANE) – The Indiana State Department of Agriculture and Lt. Gov. Suzanne Crouch announced 11 food banks in Indiana will receive a combined total of $1,000,000, through the General Assembly. It’s all to support the food banks’ efforts in feeding food insecure Hoosiers.
Fort Wayne’s Community Harvest Food Bank will receive $99,400 for the 2022 fiscal year. Community Harvest is the regional food bank for northeast Indiana, proudly serving the counties of Adams, Allen, DeKalb, Huntington, LaGrange, Noble, Steuben, Wells, and Whitley.
The state said this funding amount was more than tripled from years past.
“Food banks are tremendous assets for supporting Hoosiers, and it is great to see increased funding go to 11 food banks across Indiana,” Crouch said. “These community organizations were staples during the COVID-19 pandemic and went above and beyond to feed Hoosiers. I am proud to support their efforts each and every day.”
According to Feeding Indiana’s Hungry, nearly 1.2 million Hoosiers were food insecure during the height of the pandemic. That number was higher for children. One in every four children was at risk of hunger.
“Even with significant help coming from federal nutrition programs, we still expect more than 13 percent of all Hoosiers, and as many as one in six Hoosier children, to be unsure from where their next meal will come from this year,” said Emily Bryant, executive director of Feeding Indiana’s Hungry. “We’re grateful for the support of the General Assembly, Lt. Gov. Crouch and the Indiana State Department of Agriculture for providing additional support to our members to enable them to increase their capacity and ability to serve their communities.”
Community Harvest Food Bank reports it distributed 1.7 million pounds of food during its 2019-2020 year, and 97.6% of its funds are allocated to programs.
Last year Community Harvest served 112, 000 Hoosiers.
“It takes all of us to fight hunger, and we are so grateful to our representatives in northeast Indiana who know what we do and recognize the increased need in our region,” said Carmen Cumberland, president and CEO of Community Harvest Food Bank. “With so many people still having to choose between paying for food and other necessities, this additional funding received from ISDA will help ensure no child, Veteran, senior, or family has to worry about where their next meal will be obtained. These funds will be used to purchase food locally, benefiting Hoosier families here in northeast Indiana.”