Funds raised through employee-run program will benefit 29 statewide food pantries and support growing food needs during the summer months
Camden, Maine - June 27, 2016 - During the months of June and July, employees from Camden National Bank are delivering donations, totaling close to $9,000, to 29 food pantries throughout the state of Maine. Funds for the donations were raised by employees, through the Bank’s employee-run community outreach program, the Community Spirit of Giving (CSOG), and will help provide meals and support to the more than 208,000 individuals in Maine who currently turn to food pantries and meal service programs for food assistance every year.
“I am incredibly proud of the ways in which our employees give back to their communities every day,” said Gregory A. Dufour, president and chief executive officer of Camden National Bank. “Whether it’s raising money to help prevent hunger in our state or volunteering in their local soup kitchen, their contributions are making a difference in the neighborhoods where we live and work.”
The goal of Camden National’s Community Spirit of Giving program is to make an impact in local communities by providing assistance to underprivileged children and families through work with local food pantries, as well as schools and community leaders, to help prevent hunger. According to recent numbers provided by the Good Shepherd Food Bank of Maine, the program’s current donation will provide 34,800 meals to those facing food insecurity in the state. In addition, as food needs rise for children during the summer months, the funds can be used to support the 85,000 kids in Maine who receive free or reduced lunch and help ensure that they have enough to eat throughout summer vacation.
Dufour added, “With these donations, our employees are supporting the critical services that our state’s food pantries, many staffed solely by volunteers, provide to those in need throughout the year. Through contributions like these, as well as our ongoing volunteerism, we hope to help these agencies fight this growing trend in our state and ensure that the basic needs are met.”
Complementing Camden National Bank’s philanthropic efforts, the CSOG program was founded in 1991 by employees who wanted to create their own grassroots effort to support local communities and people in need. Over the course of a year, employees create numerous fundraising events, ranging from raffles and bake sales to yard sales and other community events. Proceeds from these activities benefit the program and are used to support the needs of food banks and local food pantries throughout the state.
According to Feeding America, a nationwide network of member food banks working to feed America’s hungry, one in seven Americans struggles to get enough to eat, and hunger or food insecurity exists in virtually every community in the United States. New data released by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) in September 2015 also shows a growing hunger problem in Maine. According to the annual survey, Maine’s food insecurity rate rose from 15.1 percent in 2013 to 16.2 percent in 2014, and Maine now ranks 12th in the nation and first in New England for food insecurity. In addition, the USDA estimates that 208,000 individuals in the state are food insecure, with 24 percent, or 64,200, being children. For more information on the survey and recent research, or to locate a food pantry in your area, visit the Good Shepherd Food Bank at http://www.gsfb.org.
About Camden National BankCamden National Bank is a full-service community bank that offers state-of-the-art online and mobile banking resources through a network of 63 branches and 85 ATMs in Maine, as well as lending offices in Massachusetts and New Hampshire. Headquartered in Camden, Maine, the Bank has been supporting Maine’s people and businesses since 1875 and believes in creating strong connections to the community through volunteerism, sponsorships, and donations that strengthen and invigorate the areas it serves. Through programs like Hope@Home and the Community Spirit of Giving (CSOG), Camden National Bank partners with local agencies to provide vital assistance to those in need throughout the state. To learn more, visit www.CamdenNational.com. Member FDIC.