IKEA has partnered with Feeding America, the nation’s largest domestic hunger-relief organization, to sponsor an in-store program which supports national children’s hunger programs. These include giving free meals and snacks to low income children, as well as giving out nutritious easy-to-prepare food for children to take home on weekends – AND other programs to meet the needs of hungry children. At IKEA, children are the most important people in the world, so IKEA looks to support programs that make a difference in the lives of the many children.
Running from July 1 – July 31, 2014, the Feeding the Future IKEA US program will donate $1 to Feeding America for every healthy kids meal purchased in any IKEA US restaurant. Additionally, IKEA customers can add donations of their chosen amount to food purchases in the IKEA restaurant, Swedish Food Market and Bistro. All added donations also will go to Feeding America. (IKEA donation up to a maximum of $50,000 not including direct customer contributions.) The two healthy kids meals in the Feeding the Future program include moose shaped pasta in tomato sauce, yogurt and a lingonberry drink. Or grilled chicken with carrot sticks, strawberries and string cheese. Each meal costs only $1.99. Even if customers order these meal options on days when kids eat free at IKEA, the contribution from IKEA will still be made. And adults can purchase these meals as well.
The IKEA vision is to create a better everyday life for the many people. Their business idea supports this vision by offering a wide range of well-designed, functional home furnishing products at prices so low that as many people as possible will be able to afford them. There are currently 305 IKEA Group stores in 26 countries. There are 38 IKEA stores in the US. In FY 13, the IKEA Group had 135,000 co-workers, 684 million visitors to the stores and 1.3 billion visitors to IKEA.com. IKEA incorporates sustainability into day-to-day business and supports initiatives that benefit children and the environment.
“We’re in a city where our customers like to make a difference, Atlanta will
help us improve lives and impact hunger in Georgia,” commented Deidra Cunningham, IKEA Atlanta PR Manager. The IKEA Atlanta location is hoping to raise more than $1,000 through this initiative. This is the first year they are working with Feeding America but hope the effort will be a successful fundraising exercise and maybe even an annual one, at that.
“Feeding America is committed to providing the most nutritious products possible to those we serve,” said Leah Ray, Vice President of Corporate Partnerships. “With IKEA’s partnership and Feeding the Future program donations, we are able to support a healthier lifestyle for all children and will be able to continue that message by adding to the over 800 million pounds of produce we already provide to our local network of food banks.”
Feeding America is a nationwide network of more than 200 food banks that
leads the fight against hunger in the United States. Together, they provide food to more than 37 million people through 61,000 food pantries, soup kitchens, and shelters in communities across America. Feeding America also supports programs that improve food security among the people served; educates the public about the problem of hunger; and advocates for legislation that protects people from going hungry. The organization believes that individuals, charities, businesses and government all have a role in ending hunger. They encourage people to donate, volunteer, advocate and educate so we can solve hunger together.
The Feeding America Food Programs benefiting from this donation include The School Pantry Program – to help alleviate child hunger in America through the provision of food to children and their families at school, Kids Café – providing free meals and snacks to low-income children through a variety of community locations where children already congregate during the after-school hours—such as Boys & Girls Clubs, churches or public schools, Summer Food Program – meeting the needs of hungry children in the summer by providing them with nutritious meals and snacks when other resources are not available, and Backpack Program – providing children facing hunger with nutritious and easy-to-prepare food to take home on weekends and school vacations when children are most at risk.
In many ways, America is the land of plenty. But for 1 in 6 people in the United States, hunger is a very real struggle. Many people believe that the problems associated with hunger are confined to small pockets of society, certain areas of the country, or certain neighborhoods, but the reality is much different. Right now, millions of Americans are at risk of hunger. These are often hard-working adults, children and seniors who simply cannot always make ends meet and may be forced to go without food. Research has shown that food insecurity and hunger are serious threats to children’s health, growth and development. The nation’s economic growth depends on the well-being of our children. As such, the existence of childhood hunger in the United States threatens future American prosperity. 18.9% of Georgians – 1 in 5 Georgians – are food insecure, meaning they don’t always know where they will find their next meal. This is well above the national average of 15.9%. (Facts from Feeding America website.)
This is a wonderful initiative preceding the Hunger Action month in September so go ahead and head to your nearest IKEA location beginning July 1, 2014 and you can help the fight to end hunger in America!