A $20,000 grant from the National Life Group Foundation to the Vermont Foodbank will help feed more than 100 children throughout the school year through the BackPack Program.

Schools offer free and reduced-price meal programs Monday through Friday. But many families don’t have enough food to get them through the weekends. Students involved in the BackPack Program take home backpacks that have been filled with enough healthy, easy-to-prepare food items to last the child and often family members for two days.

“Nutritional stability over the weekend and during out-of-school time means that kids arrive at school Monday morning well-nourished and ready to learn,” said John Sayles, CEO of the Foodbank. “National Life Group’s support of the BackPack Program is making a difference in the lives of hundreds of Vermont’s most precious resources—our children.”

The National Life Group Foundation has been a longtime supporter of the Vermont Foodbank and its efforts to ensure that Vermonters have adequate nutritional food. In addition to helping to pay for the BackPack Program, National Life Group is also the presenting sponsor this year of the Harpoon Point to Point bicycle ride that benefits the Foodbank.

And many of National Life Group’s employees volunteer their time at the Foodbank. The company provides each employee up to 40 hours of paid time to volunteer at nonprofit agencies.

National Life Group Foundation helps build healthy and vital communities by supporting organizations and initiatives that make a positive difference.  For more information, please contact Beth Rusnock, president, National Life Group Foundation, 802.229.7214.


Vermont Foodbank is the state’s largest hunger-relief organization, providing nutritious food through a network of more than 300 community partners – food shelves, meal sites, schools, hospitals, and housing sites. Food insecurity has increased dramatically as a result of the pandemic, economic disruptions, and recent flooding. The Vermont Foodbank and its network have been on the front lines, working to ensure that everyone has the food they need to maintain their health. Last year, the Vermont Foodbank provided over 12 million pounds of food to people throughout Vermont. The Vermont Foodbank, a member of Feeding America, is nationally recognized as one of the most effective and efficient nonprofits and food banks in the nation.