The Hershey Company today pledged $250,000 to the Central Pennsylvania Food Bank’s Project Advancing Hope and presented a check to the organization. The presentation comes during Hunger Action Month, a nationwide effort to raise awareness and mobilize the public to support domestic hunger relief. The check was presented by Jim George, Vice President of Corporate Social Responsibility for The Hershey Company at the Food Bank’s warehouse construction site, the centerpiece of Project Advancing Hope. Mr. George was joined by Central PA Food Bank staff and employees of The Hershey Company at the check presentation.
On Wednesday, August 3, the Central PA Food Bank broke ground on the warehouse expansion project. A parcel of land was acquired directly behind the Food Bank’s existing warehouse and 28,000 square feet of warehouse space will be added. By adding this space, the Food Bank’s rack space will increase from 1,800 rack spaces to more than 5,000 rack spaces. The new racks will be structural racking, an industry standard for food warehousing, which is much stronger than the current racking. Project Advancing Hope will also include an expanded volunteer area, a commercial grade demonstration kitchen, a clean room for sorting food, office space for our operations team, an enhanced shopping area for our partners, and capacity building grants to improve distribution to our food delivery network.
By adding this warehouse space, the Food Bank will introduce new efficiencies that were not possible in its current configuration. Bar coding will now be utilized to track inventory and increase efficiency when pulling orders and assigned storage space of food will also reduce time spent pulling orders and enhance food safety.
“During these economically challenging times, alleviating hunger here in Central Pennsylvania is more important than ever, “ said Mr. George. “The Hershey Company and its employees have proudly supported the Central PA Food Bank for many years, and we are honored to help with the important mission of Project Advancing Hope through this donation of $250,000.”
“Project Advancing Hope is essential for the Central Pennsylvania Food Bank to fulfill our mission and serve the individuals and families that are in need of food in our communities,” said Kendall Hanna, Central PA Food Bank Executive Director. “As more of our neighbors turn to emergency food, many for the first time, this donation reinforces how incredibly dedicated The Hershey Company is to our mission to feed the hungry in our communities.”
The Hershey Company has been a valued supporter of the Central PA Food Bank for more than 15 years, providing more than $200,000 in financial support, nearly four million pounds in food donations and hundreds of volunteers on a regular basis.
The total cost of Project Advancing Hope is expected to be $4 million with an anticipated completion date of April, 2012.