Hawkeye Fans Invited to Help Replenish Johnson County Crisis Center and Statewide Food Banks by Bringing Donations to April 14 Spring Practice
WEST DES MOINES, IOWA -- April 4, 2012 -- As farmers begin the 2012 planting season in Iowa, the growing problem of hunger in Iowa is on their minds.
"Iowa farmers lead the nation in livestock and crop production and they're proud that their hard work and innovation brings more food and more choices for all Americans; that's why it's unacceptable to have a 30 percent increase in the number of families who visit food banks," says Iowa Farm Bureau Federation (IFBF) President Craig Hill.
The Johnson County Crisis Center distributes 60,000 pounds of food a month and they're facing a critical shortage in both food and donations. The Iowa Food Bank Association, a collaboration of the eight food banks which collects, coordinates and distributes food and essential supplies across the state, sees similar shortages.
"That's why IFBF is proud to support the ANF/ Food Bank Drive April 14 at Kinnick Stadium in Iowa City when fans of the UI football team get their first look at the 2012 Iowa football team. We hope Hawkeye fans and all Iowans will show that they believe in taking care of their neighbors and friends in need," says Hill, a fourth generation livestock farmer from Milo.
Those who work with food banks in this state are grateful for the donations and the chance to spotlight a growing problem of hunger in Iowa. "The current economy has brought higher mortgage rates, medical and fuel costs to more Iowans at a time when they're finding it tough to find a full-time job with benefits. It all adds to the problem of hunger in Iowa," says Jordan Vernoy, director of the Iowa Food Bank Association. Many food banks are seeing a critical shortfall. "But, we want Iowans to know that it's so easy to help our neighbors in need; every one dollar donated can help us gather $15 of food donations," says Vernoy.
To encourage donations, the first 1,000 Iowa Hawkeye fans who bring a donation of cash or canned food to the Hawkeyes' open-to-the-public practice can receive ANF items. There is no admission charge to attend the scrimmage and the gates open at 11 a.m.
ANF was first launched in 1985 during the height of the Farm Crisis, by legendary Hawkeye coach Hayden Fry, who wanted to show an increasingly urban nation why agriculture matters. For more information about the Iowa Farm Bureau/U of I ANF partnership, click on www.americaneedsfarmers.org.
To learn more about the growing number of Iowans in need and ways to help, click on http://iowafba.org/.
About Iowa Farm Bureau
The Iowa Farm Bureau Federation is a grassroots, statewide organization dedicated to enhancing the People, Progress and Pride of Iowa. More than 153,000 families in Iowa are Farm Bureau members, working together to achieve farm and rural prosperity. For more information about Farm Bureau and agriculture, visit the online Newsroom page at www.iowafarmbureau.com.