Louisville, Kentucky, March 20,2020- Today, Blessings in a Backpack, a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization that provides meals to children who might otherwise go hungry, accepted a critical donation to help fulfill its mission amidst the country's coronavirus pandemic. KFC U.S. has donated $400,000 to Blessings in a Backpack, which will go directly to provide pre-packed "Blessings Bags" filled with food for school children to keep them from going hungry during the novel coronavirus pandemic.
One in five American children faces food insecurity — more than the populations of New York City, Los Angeles, and Chicago combined. Federal school meal programs provide breakfast and lunch during the school day, but Blessings in a Backpack works to fill the gap so that children do not go hungry on the weekends.
With mandatory school closures impacting the U.S., this donation will help feed 100,000 children who depend on the federal free and reduced meal programs at their schools, bridging a critical gap during this global pandemic. To best serve children who are facing school closures, these meals will be distributed through existing Blessings in a Backpack programs at local feeding sites throughout the country.
KFC has been partnering with Blessings in a Backpack since 2017. Employees at KFC's Louisville, Ky. based headquarters volunteer weekly to provide and physically package up more than 300 meals for local students to take home for the weekend. Today their partnership grows through this donation, made possible with support from the Yum! Foundation, which will ensure meals are distributed across the country to more than 100,000 children at thousands of schools and communities in the United States.
"We're all living in a time of uncertainty, but children shouldn't have to worry about where their next meal is coming from," said Kevin Hochman, president, KFC U.S. "We're proud to partner with an organization like Blessings in a Backpack who, like KFC, is focused on feeding America."
"We are beyond grateful for the generous support of KFC during this time. Blessings in a Backpack is expanding its programs from feeding children only on the weekends to serving children as schools are closed because of KFC's donation," said Brooke Wiseman, CEO, Blessings in a Backpack. "One-hundred thousand children across the country will be fed by KFC's kindness."
Both founded in Louisville, Ky., Blessings in a Backpack and KFC share common goals of changing lives for the better, fighting hunger, and providing whole meals for children and families across the country. Blessings feeds more than 87,000 children in 1,092 schools in 45 U.S. states and the District of Columbia.
In addition to its support of Blessings in a Backpack, select KFC restaurants across the country donate surplus food every week to nonprofit organizations in their communities through the KFC Harvest program. Since it began in 1999, KFC's Harvest program has donated more than 82 million pounds of food to those in need. This critical work continues during this time of increased food insecurity.
KFC Corporation, based in Louisville, Ky., is the world's most popular chicken restaurant chain. KFC specializes in Original Recipe®, Extra Crispy™, Kentucky Grilled Chicken® and Extra Crispy™ Tenders, Hot Wings®, KFC Famous Bowls®, Pot Pies, freshly hand prepared chicken sandwiches, biscuits and homestyle side items. There are more than 23,000 KFC restaurants in 140 countries and territories around the world. KFC Corporation is a subsidiary of Yum! Brands, Inc., Louisville, Ky. (NYSE: YUM). For more information, visit www.kfc.com. Follow KFC on Facebook (www.facebook.com/kfc), Twitter (www.twitter.com/kfc) and Instagram (www.instagram.com/KFC).
About Blessings in a Backpack
Hunger has both short- and long-term negative effects on children's health and ability to succeed in school. Blessings in a Backpack mobilizes communities, individuals, and resources to provide food on the weekends for elementary school children across America who might otherwise go hungry. Blessings in a Backpack provided 3 million hunger-free weekends for more than 83,000 kids in 45 states and Washington D.C. For more information, visit blessingsinabackpack.org.