Gleaners and SEP Work Together to Feed Indiana’s Hungry
One in Six people in America are food insecure; unable to afford or access reliable sources of nourishment. No one organization is capable of meeting the food demands of an entire nation, and on local levels non-profits and charitable groups struggle to meet the demands of a hungry population.
Serving much of Central Indiana, Gleaners is doing its part to serve the 113,632 food insecure children and their families as well as the many individuals living without regular meal sources. With 19% of children under 18 years old in the state being described as food insecure, every cent Gleaners is gifted goes a long way. Each dollar donated is the equivalent of four meals with food donations from growers, manufacturers and retailers among the food industry further aiding Gleaners’ goal of reaching local communities in need of food.
The Indiana-based food bank has been leading the fight against hunger by collecting and disseminating sundries across the state with the help of a dedicated staff, eager volunteers and willing sponsors able to provide the money and time necessary to fulfill Gleaner’s mission.
Spearheaded by the efforts of Vice President of Engineering Chris Atkinson, Software Engineering Professionals (SEP) has partnered with Gleaners to help the non-profit organization facilitate storage and distribution for more than 350 hunger relief agencies throughout Indiana. “From my perspective we are just getting started in our partnership,” enthuses Atkinson, forecasting SEP’s involvement with Gleaners to continue to evolve and grow.
The increased effort by SEP has already begun with the company’s involvement with Gleaner’s annual fundraiser, the Harvest Moon Gala. “SEP’s gracious investment in Gleaners’ work has helped hundreds of needy Hoosiers face tomorrow with enough to eat,” begins Corporate & Foundation Relations Manager, Margaret Strodtbeck. “Additionally, SEP has committed to volunteer work at Gleaners so that SEP’s employees may put their hands to work alongside the company’s financial support.”
That work includes packaging food boxes for Indiana families, helping load delivery trucks and leading efforts in organizing Gleaners’ Mobile Pantry to eradicate hunger, including SEP’s own Hamilton County headquarters. “Companies that give back to the community retain the loyalty of their employees and raise local awareness for their company mission,” states Strodtbeck, “becoming advocates for Gleaners’ work at leading the fight against hunger.”
SEP participated in its first company-wide volunteer night November 13th participating in Gleaner’s BackSacks program, “[the] first of many wonderful experiences for SEP staff,” states Strodtbeck. Atkinson adds, “This was an opportunity to encourage the spirit of volunteering,” a motivation he and Gleaners continue to spread throughout SEP and its extended family.