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Each holiday season, hundreds of local companies host a canned food donation drive to support Sacramento Food Bank & Family Services (SFBFS). In an effort to provide more nutritious foods, SFBFS is hosting a new donation drive concept: the virtual food drive. Instead of individuals cleaning out their cupboard to donate near-expired products, families can make a financial donation, which will be used to purchase fresh fruits and vegetables for families in need.
The virtual drive offers individuals and companies the opportunity to sign up for their own online fundraising page, set a goal and ask friends, family and co-workers to support SFBFS. Over the past 18 years, SFBFS’ holiday donation drive has grown from a handful of participants to over 360 locations. Executing this massive, in-kind donation drive costs thousands of dollars each year in fuel, time and materials. During the 2011 drive, over 50% of participating locations returned less than 100 pounds in donations (that’s less than one-third of a barrel). Additionally, many of the in-kind food donations that SFBFS receives cannot be distributed because they are past expiration, crushed or the seal is broken. This results in thousands of pounds of discarded food.
Funds raised through the Virtual Food Drive will be used to support SFBFS’ Food program, which currently distributes take-home groceries to over 15,000 men, women and children each month. With an increasing number of new faces coming to SFBFS each year, staff and volunteers are working harder than ever to provide fresh, seasonal produce, health screenings and educational children’s activities to families in our community. SFBFS can stretch financial donations by using massive buying power and community partnerships to provide more to those in need. In fact, a donation of $12.60 provides a family of four with a five day supply of fresh produce from SFBFS.
It’s incredibly easy to sign up for the Virtual Food Drive. Simply check the box for “Virtual Food Drive” on the 2012 Fall Drives Form, found on the Host a Donation Drive page of SFBFS’ Web site. Companies and organizations choosing this option will receive a welcome e-mail with easy-to-follow instructions and a link to create their own personalized fundraising page. Add a special welcome message, picture or logo, send out invitational e-mails to friends, family and staff and set a fundraising goal. Then simply direct supporters to your fundraising site where they can make a quick, safe and secure online contribution. You can even link your company’s Web site to your SOG fundraising site!
About Sacramento Food Bank & Family Services
Sacramento Food Bank & Family Services is a local, privately funded, non-profit organization serving families in need since 1976. A staff of 40 and several thousand volunteers accomplish SFBFS’ mission of assisting those in need by alleviating their immediate pain and problems and by moving them toward self-sufficiency and financial independence. More information is available at www.sacramentofoodbank.org.