Food Bank of South Jersey Receives $25,000 Grant from Horizon Blue Cross Blue Shield of New Jersey to Support COVID-19 Hunger-Relief Response

PENNSAUKEN, NEW JERSEY – JULY 27, 2020 – The Food Bank of South Jersey – South Jersey’s largest hunger-relief organization and a member of the Feeding America network of national food banks – has received a grant in the amount of $25,000 from Horizon Blue Cross Blue Shield of New Jersey. The donation made through The Horizon Foundation for New Jersey will be used to fund COVID-19 hunger-relief response initiatives.

“We are incredibly grateful to Horizon Blue Cross Blue Shield of New Jersey and The Foundation for strengthening our capacity to serve the more than 94,000 people each month who are turning to us at this time for food support, including more than 35,000 children,” reports Food Bank of South Jersey President & CEO Fred C. Wasiak.

In the first 120 days of its response to the global COVID-19 pandemic, the Food Bank of South Jersey – South Jersey’s largest hunger-relief organization – increased its capacity to serve a surging food-insecure population by distributing more than 7.6 million pounds of food, more than 34,250 emergency food boxes and feeding more than 94,800 people, including 35,000 children, during a massive food distribution initiative engineered to bring food, wellness and support to South Jersey. To date, the Food Bank is experiencing a 44 percent increase of food distributed as compared to the same time period last year – with the first half of 2019 showing a food distribution total of 6.9 million pounds, and the first half of 2020, including COVID-19 response, recording a 9.9 million total in food distribution.

“Horizon is pleased to support the important work being done by the Food Bank of South Jersey to continue its COVID-19 emergency food response in Burlington, Camden, Gloucester and Salem counties,” reports Jonathan R. Pearson, Executive Director of The Horizon Foundation for New Jersey. “The Food Bank of South Jersey aligns with Horizon’s commitment to helping our members access the resources they need to manage their health. We are improving the health of the communities we serve by helping people gain access to nutrition, vital food resources. The Horizon Foundation for New Jersey works across New Jersey with grantees who share our commitment to improving the health and communities we serve.”

About The Horizon Foundation for New Jersey

The Horizon Foundation for New Jersey is committed to working alongside those who can help us improve our neighbors’ health, inform their health decisions and inspire them to lead healthier, more fulfilling lives. The Foundation’s mission is to support organization’s that make New Jersey healthier. The Foundation has three funding pillars, Caring, Connecting and Creating. Horizon Blue Cross Blue Shield of New Jersey is the sole member of The Horizon Foundation for New Jersey, both of which are independent licensees of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association. For more information please visit http://community.horizonblue.com. Follow @HZNFoundation for updates about The Horizon Foundation for New Jersey programs, grants and the activities of our grantees. Follow @HorizonBCBSNJ for up-to-date news and updates about Horizon Blue Cross Blue Shield of New Jersey.

ABOUT FOOD BANK OF SOUTH JERSEY

Marking its 35th year in 2020, the Food Bank of South Jersey (FBSJ) is the leader in providing safe and nutritional food to people in need throughout South Jersey. FBSJ distributes food, provides nutrition education and cooking courses, and helps food-insecure families and seniors find sustainable ways to improve their lives.

Throughout 2019, FBSJ distributed over 15 million pounds of food, more than 230,000 summer meals and over 17,500 senior food boxes, as well as serving 95 health and wellness programs to more than 11,700 residents. Providing community impact through local support, FBSJ ensures that local donations stay local. FBSJ is a member of Feeding America, our nation’s largest hunger-relief organization. During 2020, with COVID-19 bringing school closures, stay-at-home orders, record-breaking unemployment and rising poverty, FBSJ within the first 120 days of response to the COVID-19 crisis distributed more than seven million pounds of food throughout its four-county region of impact, including the distribution of more than 34,500 emergency food boxes to food-insecure populations, increasing its partner agency network to over 200 and serving over 94,000 food-insecure South Jersey residents each month, including the distribution of more than 218,375 nutritious breakfasts and lunches to more than 35,000 food-insecure South Jersey children. To learn more, visit www.foodbanksj.org. On Twitter, follow the Food Bank of South Jersey @foodbankSJ.