Food bank needs help to get grant

Published 10:36 pm Monday, September 10, 2012

Food Bank of the Albemarle, which provides food to Washington-based Eagle’s Wings, is seeking support in an effort to obtain up to a $250,000 grant to help it carry out its mission.
The nonprofit provides emergency food assistance to those in need in 15 counties of northeastern North Carolina. It is competing with charities nationwide for grants ranging from $10,000 to $250,000. The source of those grants is the Chase Community Giving program.
Area residents can help Food Bank of the Albemarle in its effort to obtain a grant by voting for the nonprofit through the Chase Community Giving program on Facebook. To vote, visit Community Giving and voting.
“With an award of just $10,000, we can provide over 41,000 meals. This is significant when we are facing a tremendous meal gap — for us, every dollar counts,” Liz Reasoner, executive director of Food Bank of the Albemarle, said of the effect a grant from the Chase Community Giving program would have on the effort to feed the hungry in northeastern North Carolina.
At a Washington City Council meeting last month, Allison Wills, food-resource coordinator for the food bank, said the 20 percent of Beaufort County’s residents are “food insecure.”
“We just recently completed a meal-gap analysis. We have discovered that one in five citizens in Beaufort County are food insecure. When I say they’re food insecure, it means either they don’t know where their next meal is coming from or they’re not sure they’re going to have money to buy their next meal,” Wills said at that meeting. “So, they have to make hard choices — hard choices about whether to pay the rent or to buy groceries for their children.”
Wills also said that of those one in five who are food insecure, one in four of them are children.
During the past fiscal year, according to Wills, the food bank served 26,892 households in the county and 50,572 individuals, with 44 percent of that number being children or senior citizens.

About Mike Voss

Mike Voss is the contributing editor at the Washington Daily News. He has a daughter and four grandchildren. Except for nearly six years he worked at the Free Lance-Star in Fredericksburg, Va., in the early to mid-1990s, he has been at the Daily News since April 1986.
Journalism awards:
• Pulitzer Prize for Meritorious Public Service, 1990.
• Society of Professional Journalists: Sigma Delta Chi Award, Bronze Medallion.
• Associated Press Managing Editors’ Public Service Award.
• Investigative Reporters & Editors’ Award.
• North Carolina Press Association, First Place, Public Service Award, 1989.
• North Carolina Press Association, Second Place, Investigative Reporting, 1990.
All those were for the articles he and Betty Gray wrote about the city’s contaminated water system in 1989-1990.
• North Carolina Press Association, First Place, Investigative Reporting, 1991.
• North Carolina Press Association, Third Place, General News Reporting, 2005.
• North Carolina Press Association, Second Place, Lighter Columns, 2006.
Recently learned he will receive another award.
• North Carolina Press Association, First Place, Lighter Columns, 2010.
4. Lectured at or served on seminar panels at journalism schools at UNC-Chapel Hill, University of Maryland, Columbia University, Mary Washington University and Francis Marion University.

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