(WBNG Binghamton) The Food Bank of the Southern Tier announced that it dedicated a new truck for its nationally recognized Mobile Food Pantry Program on Wednesday, March 27, at a reception that acknowledged the donors who made the truck possible.
According to a news release:
Thanked for their gifts were the family of the late Donna Casano Benedict of Ithaca, Tioga Downs Casino Racing and Entertainment, the Triad Foundation, and The Hilliard Foundation.
The new truck is the largest of the three trucks that deliver food to Mobile Food Pantry
distribution sites across the Food Bank’s six-county service area: Broome, Chemung, Schuyler, Steuben, Tioga and Tompkins Counties. It is also the Food Bank’s first Mobile Food Pantry truck with a refrigerated bay.
The addition of the new truck will enable the Food Bank to distribute 500,000 more pounds of food to high-need, rural communities and urban areas where access to food pantries, soup kitchens and other emergency food agencies is limited.
The gift from the Benedict family also established a fund that will support the expansion of the Mobile Food Pantry over the next five years.
The tribute to Mrs. Casano reads, “In loving memory of Donna Casano Benedict, who knew hunger and spent her life ensuring those around her were well fed. Mangia! Mangia!” A plaque honoring Mrs. Benedict will be installed in the Food Bank.
The new truck was purchased with a challenge gift of $59,113 from the John P. Hussman Foundation of Maryland and was matched with gifts from the donors honored at the March 27th event. A condition of the Hussman Foundation grant was that the challenge gift be matched dollar for dollar by other donors.
The Food Bank was the one of the first two food banks nationally that completed the challenge
successfully. More than $200,000 in matching gifts were ultimately raised by the Food Bank. The Hussman Foundation Challenge was made available to food banks across the country by Feeding America, the nation’s food bank network.
The names of all the donors, including the Hussman Foundation, are on the back of the truck.