Food Bank, Bayer Crop Science collaborate to deliver food boxes to needy families.
Starting the first week of April, the Food Bank of Puerto Rico will deliver food boxes to families at risk of food insecurity in six communities in the towns of Juana Díaz and Santa Isabel.
The collaborative effort is made possible by a grant from the Bayer Fund, the agricultural company’s philanthropic arm.
Through this initiative, the Food Bank will prepare and deliver food boxes once a month for ten months to the community leaders of Las Ollas and Playita Cortada in Santa Isabel, and Arús, Manzanilla, Galicia, and Collores in Juana Díaz.
They will then deliver them to those families identified as extremely food insecure or in danger of hunger. The initiative will benefit a total of approximately 2,750 people in these communities. With this collaboration, both organizations seek to continue assisting families who face food shortages in their homes because of the COVID 19 pandemic.
“We are very grateful to Bayer for the opportunity to collaborate in this initiative,” said Denise L. Santos, president of the Food Bank of Puerto Rico. “Due to the COVID-19 pandemic and the jobs crisis, more people have entered the spectrum of food insecurity. This grant from the Bayer Fund will allow the Food Bank to reach more people who need nutritious food.”
This grant for the Food Bank will provide funds for two programs that the Bank has been executing for several years, with relevant modifications due to the COVID-19 pandemic, La Mochila Alegre and Lonchera Dorada.
Kid-focused food boxes provide meals for ages 3-14. The foods available in these boxes were modified to suit children, maintaining the nutritional value and content children need for their growth. These food boxes were prepared to Feeding America standards, with local tastes in mind.
The food boxes for seniors were also prepared with Feeding America standards in collaboration with the Department of Health and the College of Nutritionists and Dietitians of Puerto Rico.
“Since the devastation caused by Hurricane María, there has been more awareness on the island about food and the problems of lack of access to healthy food. For years, it has been a problem that has passed under the table. Now that it has become more evident, through this grant, we formalize our commitment to contribute to the search for solutions,” said Miguel Pereira, Puerto Rico government affairs lead at Bayer Crop Science.