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Successful Phillies Food Drive Feeds Thousands

Philadelphia Business Journal

Successful Phillies food drive feeds thousands

Citizens Bank  .. Foundation and the Philadelphia Phillies teamed up to help the Philabundance food bank for its Phans Feeding Families program, which has provided more than 190,000 meals for families. Fans at Phillies games during July donated more than five tons of food to Philabundance and Citizens Bank Foundation donated $50,000 to it as well as another $83,000 to other nonprofits.

“The Phans Feeding Families event is really fantastic,” said Executive Director Bill Clark, adding that summer is an urgent time for hungry families because kids don’t get access to school lunches and breakfasts. Additionally, Clark said that with most food drives being around the holidays, less food comes in during the summer. Clark said there has been a 66 percent increase in the number of families that approach the agency during the past two years, and food donations are down by about a quarter.

“Citizens Bank and the Phillies, we’ve worked with them before, but they basically offered to come to our aid and see what they can do. They created between them this Phans Feeding Families program, which brought the publicity power of the Philadelphia Phillies to raise awareness of the program, and they did fantastically well,” Clark said.

During pre-game ceremonies, representatives from Aramark  .. , Citizens Bank, The Coca-Cola Co.  .. , Goya Foods  .. , Hatfield Quality Meats, Septa, ShopRite  .. and Toyota joined Philabundance for the first pitch. Each pitcher was meant to symbolize 100,000 of the 900,000 people at risk of hunger in the Delaware Valley. Each of the sponsors provide support to local hunger relief efforts through food drives, financial donations or product contributions throughout the year.

Citizens Bank’s regional President and CEO Daniel Fitzpatrick said hunger initiatives have been a focus of Citizens Bank’s philanthropic efforts.

“We have a long track record of working closely with Philabundance and the wonderful job of tackling hunger that they do,” he said. “The hunger issue is often really misunderstood and awareness isn’t as great as it should be. Particularly in the summer months, we have a real hunger crisis in Philadelphia. With that being a key initiative for us, we thought how can we help Philabundance do more? We are so fortunate to have this wonderful partnership between Citizens and the Philadelphia Phillies,” Fitzpatrick said. “They jumped right in, it’s a great cause.”

Beneficial Bank book drive benefits readers

Throughout the month of August, all Beneficial Bank  .. offices collected books to benefit children in grades Pre-K through 8 in Pennsylvania and children and adults in South Jersey. All books were donated to Philadelphia Reads and the Drenk Center.

“Philadelphia Reads provides a children’s book bank, and they provide free children’s books to under-resourced schools here in Philadelphia,” said Robert Juliano, vice president of community development for Philadelphia-based Beneficial. All the books collected at Beneficial’s New Jersey branches went to the Drenk Center, a behavioral services organization in Hainesport, N.J.

Last year, Beneficial Bank held a school-supply drive. Beneficial also held a drive to give mobile phones to women in transition and to senior 911 programs in New Jersey, which ended in July in conjunction with its mobile banking launch, Juliano said. In the fall, Beneficial is holding a food drive.

Odds and ends

• The Warrington office of law firm Fox Rothschild  .. LLP recently donated gently used office furniture to the Bucks County Housing Group, the county’s largest homeless shelter operator. The furniture will be used to outfit a small conference room and administrative office for its service providers.

• TruMark Financial Credit Union  .. raised $545 for United Way of Southeastern Pennsylvania and Cradles to Crayons by relaxing its dress code on July 8 and July 22. The money will be used to buy backpacks and school supplies for children living in shelters.

• Fifteen undergraduate law interns from the office of Cozen O’Connor organized a volunteer day as well as a coin and can drive to benefit the Philabundance food bank. The interns packed 1,080 boxes of food and beverages for senior citizens on government assistance. With the firms’ support they were able to donate 503 cans and $680.

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