COTTAGE HILLS — Community Hope Center received a $60,000 grant Wednesday from the Walmart Foundation’s State Giving Program for the purchase of two delivery trucks for its food pantry program.
The trucks will help the center collect food donations from businesses, churches and individuals committed to alleviating hunger for local families.
“One of the best things about serving at Community Hope Center is that every day we get to see how generously this community responds to the needs of others and how willing our neighbors are to lift up each other,” Community Hope Center Executive Director Paul Militzer said. “It is a huge encouragement to our volunteers to have a corporation like Walmart support our efforts. This grant helps to meet one of our most significant needs and will be a blessing to us and the people we serve for years to come.”
“At the Walmart Foundation, we understand that organizations such as Community Hope Center are essential to building stronger communities,” Walmart Public Affairs Director Michelle Caraballo said. “They share our values and are committed to helping local individuals and families in need live better. Through this donation, we are hopeful that residents in the Metro East will continue to work together to eliminate hunger and food insecurity, particularly when it comes to children.”
The center provides food, clothing, household items and toiletries at no cost to those less fortunate and offers prayer and encouragement to everyone. In addition to material goods, the center provides free prepared lunches three days a week and haircuts twice a month. The organization also collaborates with businesses and other nonprofit agencies to offer information on budgeting, nutrition, veterans’ benefits, legal assistance, and other benevolence services — all of which are cost-free to clients. In 2014, CHC distributed approximately $2.6 million in food to 6,975 individuals.
The Walmart Foundation’s State Giving Program supports organizations that create opportunities so people can live better, awarding grants to communities across the nation. To be considered for support, organizations must submit applications through the program’s online grant application. Applicants must have a current 501(c)(3) tax-exempt status to meet the program’s minimum eligibility criteria. Additional information about the program’s funding guidelines and application process are available online at www.walmartfoundation.org/stategiving.
As part of Walmart’s $2 billion commitment to fight hunger through 2015, Walmart stores in Illinois donated 22.6 million pounds of food, in fiscal year 2014, or the equivalent of 18.9 million meals. Walmart reached $260 million in cash and $2.6 billion in in-kind donations nationwide, delivering on its commitment one year early. Additionally, just in the last fiscal year, Walmart and the Walmart Foundation gave more than $44.9 million to Illinois nonprofits. For information, visit http://foundation.walmart.com/our-focus/hunger.