September 14th truck convoy kicks off annual delivery of 10.4 million meals to 19 Food Banks and pantries throughout Northeast
Barre, VT, September 14th, 2017 – Ocean State Job Lot, a 127-store discount retail chain headquartered in North Kingstown, R.I. and now in its 40th anniversary year, announces the 2017 Ocean State Job Lot Charitable Foundation’s “Three Square Meals” hunger relief program throughout the Northeast. Three Square Meals is the single largest food assistance program of its kind in the region.
The program will distribute more than 200 tractor trailer loads of food throughout the year to 19 food banks and pantries which, in turn, distribute to thousands of soup kitchens and meal sites across six New England states, and New York and New Jersey, including: Rhode Island Community Food Bank (Providence, RI), Connecticut Food Bank (Wallingford, CT), Foodshare (Bloomfield, CT), Gather (Portsmouth, NH), New Horizons For New Horizons, Inc., (Manchester, NH), Nashua Soup Kitchen and Shelter, Inc., (Nashua, NH), Society of St. Vincent DePaul (Exeter, NH), New Hampshire Food Bank (Manchester, NH), Food Bank of the Hudson Valley (Cornwall-on-Hudson, NY), Worcester County Food Bank (Shrewsbury, MA), Food Bank of Western Massachusetts (Hatfield, MA), Good Shepherd Food Bank (Auburn, ME), Vermont Foodbank (Barre, VT), Boston Medical Center Food Pantry (Boston, MA), Greater Boston Food Bank (Boston), Long Island Cares (Hauppauge, NY), NORWESCAP (Phillipsburg, NJ), Fulfill Monmouth & Ocean (Neptune City, NJ), Community Food Bank of New Jersey (Hillside, NJ), and the Regional Food Bank of Northeastern New York (Latham, NY).
On Thursday, September 14, 2017 at 9:30 a.m., the first delivery of food for this year’s program was made via convoy of 22+ tractor trailer trucks each loaded with approximately 35,000 pounds of nutritious, shelf-stable food, marking the initial installment of a total 8 million pounds of food delivered throughout 2017-18. This is the equivalent of 10.4 million meals.
Funds for Three Square Meals are raised between November and December through a combination of in-store customer donations at the register, contributions from the business community, and matching funds from the Job Lot Charitable Foundation. Job Lot then leverages its wholesale buying power and retailing expertise to purchase food at significant value. It also donates the cost of operational support, including delivery, insurance, warehousing, fuel, labor and other expenses to ensure that 100% of every dollar raised goes to the plate to help families and individuals in need. Food items to be distributed include pasta, cereal, canned vegetables and fruit, soup, canned tuna, dried beans, rice, and more.
Now in its 14th year, the Three Square Meals program is supported by business and food partners, such as Kellogg’s, Bob’s Red Mill, Polar Beverages, Bank of America, Arbella Insurance, McLaughlin & Moran, Sodexo, Atlas Pallet and Boston’s Best Coffee Roasters. Media sponsors are ABC6, iHeart Radio, Latina 100.3 FM, and WBLQ AM 1230.
Ocean State Job Lot Co-Founder Alan Perlman recognizes the contributions and generosity of the company’s valued customers. “Three Square Meals was developed to feed the hungry near our stores and we partner with organizations that can alert us to the needs of the communities and help us get the food to them,” he said. “This program is a meaningful way to bring together our friends and neighbors to address the issue of hunger, and to raise awareness that this a problem affecting our state, region and nation. Everyone who participates can help feed thousands of families. I am grateful to those involved and very proud of what we are all able to do on a large scale throughout the region.”
“This donation will make a big difference for our neighbors facing hunger here in Vermont,” says Vermont Foodbank CEO John Sayles. “With 153,000 Vermonters turning to us for help every year, generous donations like this are critical. We are so grateful to Ocean State Job Lot and their customers for coming together to help ensure that everyone in our community has the healthy food we all need to thrive.”