How Food Banks And Food Pantries Get Their Food

milton harrison
December 9, 2020
by Paul Morello

Food banks distribute a lot of food. The Feeding America network of food banks has distributed more than 4 billion meals to our neighbors since the beginning of the COVID pandemic. As we continue the fight against hunger in the United States, food banks will need to provide millions more meals to meet the increased need.   

But, where do food banks get all that food and what can you do to help? From individual food drives to farmers, as well as federal programs, there are three main ways food banks get food to feed their communities. 

1. Food is donated to food banks 

Most of the food that reaches struggling families is donated to food banks by people, businesses, and farmers. Food donations can come from: 

  • Food drives.¬†An important source of high-quality, shelf-stable items,¬†food drives provide flexibility for food banks¬†as the food received can be distributed immediately or stored until needed. Food drives are started by individuals, families, church groups, companies, businesses, and more.¬†
  • Farmers.¬†Many food banks have relationships with¬†local farmers¬†‚Äď from small urban gardens to sprawling rural operations ‚Äď which donate a portion of their crop to the food bank. These donations help food banks provide healthy foods to our neighbors who may not otherwise have access to fresh produce. These relationships are also¬†a critical part of fighting food waste¬†by providing farmers and growers with an option to donate excess produce.¬†
  • Companies and local businesses.¬†Large and small food businesses, restaurants, and bakeries donate food to food banks. These donations can be big ‚Äď a truckload of milk ‚Äď or smaller ‚Äď a few boxes of extra bread from a local bakery. Donations from these groups include everything from dairy products to canned goods or even meat products. ¬†

Want to make a food donation to your local food bank? Check out what’s best to donate and what you should avoid.  

2. Food banks purchase food 

Sometimes, food banks may purchase the items their neighbors need but aren’t donated regularly, such as fresh produce and dairy. In many cases, food banks purchase this food at much lower prices than what we spend at the grocery store so donated dollars can turn into more meals. Purchasing also means food banks can be flexible to address needs specific to their communities like culturally or medically specific diets. 

Find your local food bank and make a monetary donation now to ensure they have the support needed to provide food for our neighbors facing hunger throughout the year. 

3. Food banks receive food from federal programs 

The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) provides billions of meals to our neighbors facing hunger each year. The USDA purchases food from farmers and provides the food to food banks for distribution in their communities. The USDA’s programs are one of the most reliable sources of food for food banks, providing 1.7 billion meals in 2020. 

Unfortunately, food banks could lose 50% of the food ‚Äď or 850 million meals - from the USDA in early 2021. ¬†At a time when so many people are facing hunger, any decrease in food support to food banks will be devastating. ¬†

Want to get involved? Tell your members of Congress that food banks need an increase in USDA food to help our neighbors facing hunger. 

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We Are So Grateful For Your Support It Makes All The Difference

milton harrison

Written by Tianna Kelly, National Alliance to End Homelessness

The holidays are now officially upon us, and with them comes the opportunity to reflect on what makes us feel truly grateful.  

This year, we are especially grateful for you.  

The past twelve months have brought a slew of challenges that none of us expected. Through it all, you’ve been there, continuing to support our neighbors who need it most. We at the Alliance are so thankful for your partnership, which allows us to keep doing the work we do. 

We are also thankful for the opportunity to serve. Being part of a community of people who know that ending homelessness is not only possible, but necessary, and who work hard to make that goal a reality, makes us so appreciative.  

Finally, now especially, we are grateful for a place to call home. This year has underscored the importance of a safe, secure place to call home. Home has become the place where we work, learn, and entertain ourselves. 

Home is what keeps us safe. 

Yet, the more than 567,000 people experiencing homelessness today have faced the year’s many challenges without a safe place to retreat to, and will spend the holidays facing even greater uncertainty.

The Alliance has spent this year working hard to minimize the pandemic’s impact on people experiencing homelessness, to reduce the number of people who become homeless due to lasting economic uncertainty, and to try to mitigate the spread of the coronavirus among populations of people who are homeless. 

We have increased our focus on racial equity, working hard to understand the disparities in homelessness so we can help reduce them.  

And we have worked to reduce rates of homelessness among families with children, veterans, members of the LGBTQ+ community, and people with disabilities. 

We couldn’t have done any of it without you.  

Despite the deep commitment of providers, systems leaders, and advocates in communities across the country, this year has been an especially tough one on people experiencing homelessness. We are committed to ending homelessness for all, and we’re so grateful to know that you are, too.   

Your friendship and support make all the difference in the world. We wish you and your loved ones a Happy Holidays! 

The purchase of Pushone Charitable Box of the Month help to fight Homelessness in the United States.


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October Is Breast Cancer Awareness Month

milton harrison

October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month and to help spread awareness and raise money for the cause the Pushone charitable box for the month is for the Susan G. Komen foundation.  

Did you know that breast cancer is the most common cancer in women, targeting one in eight women over a lifetime? According to NBC4 community partner American Cancer Society, it is expected there are nearly 270,000 new breast cancer cases in the country in 2020. 

Early detection is key for combating breast cancer.  The American Cancer Society’s recommendations for early detection of breast cancer for women of average risk include:

  • Ages 40-44: Women should have the option to start screening with a mammogram every year.
  • Ages 45-54: Women should get a mammogram every year.
  • Women age 55 and older can switch to a mammogram every other year or choose to continue annual mammograms.¬†

Although there is no sure way to prevent breast cancer, there are things you can do to lower your risk:

  • Get to and stay at a healthy weight:¬†Both increased body weight and weight gain as an adult are linked with a higher risk of breast cancer after menopause. The American Cancer Society recommends you stay at a healthy weight throughout your life.¬†
  • Be physically active:¬†Moderate to vigorous physical activity is linked with lower breast cancer risk, so it‚Äôs important to get regular physical activity, including at least 150 minutes of moderate intensity activity each week.
  • Avoid or limit alcohol:¬†Alcohol¬†increases risk of breast cancer. Even low levels of alcohol intake have been linked with an increase in risk.¬†
  • Eat fruits and vegetables:¬†Many studies have suggested that a diet high in vegetables and fruit, and low in red meat, can reduce the risk of cancer.
  • Other factors that might lower risk:¬†Women who choose to breastfeed for at least several months may also get an added benefit of reducing their breast cancer risk.
  • Using¬†hormone therapy after menopause can¬†increase¬†your risk of breast cancer. To avoid this, talk to your health care provider about non-hormonal options to treat menopausal symptoms.

October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month and to help spread awareness and raise money for the cause a selection of brands have offered their support.

For more information on breast cancer early detection, risk factors, treatment, recovery or free patient support, call the American Cancer Society anytime at 800-227-2345 or visit and

Together We Can Make A Difference!

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Super Berry Bowl Smoothie - With Coconut And Chia Seeds

milton harrison

Here’s a delicious and easy-to-make smoothie recipe using the new Organic Freeze-Dried Super 8 Berry Blend.

Dark Berries are Nutritious and Loaded with Antioxidants

Not only is this possibly the healthiest berry smoothie you’ll ever enjoy, but it's perfect for a healthy breakfast to fuel your workout and your entire day! Making it perfect for your pre-workout routine of Pushing to be the best version of you. 

It’s also great for lunch, dinner, a snack, or anywhere in between.

That’s because this Super Berry Bowl is made with a freeze-dried berry mix featuring eight of the most nutrient-rich berries on earth. It tastes so good and it's good for you too.

Naturally sweet, sour, and delightfully tart

The organic berries in the blend are organic, freeze-dried, and powdered, preserving all the vital nutrition - letting you enjoy this amazing nutrition year-round. The berries in the blend include acai berry, goji berry, maqui berry, blueberry, blackberry, strawberry, red raspberry, and acerola cherry. 

Here's what you need and how to make this fantastic berry bowl:

  • Bananas: Ideally frozen bananas since they are naturally super sweet and creamy.¬†
  • Almond Milk: You need some kind of liquid to get things moving along while blending. Almond milk can be added for an extra protein boost (feel free to add any of your favorite milk).¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†
  • Honey: To enhance sweetness. If you are satisfied with the banana's sweetness, no need to add honey.
  • Berries: Fresh berries can be added to the recipe to increase thickness and texture.

Ingredients for your smoothie:

  1. 4 Tbsp of Organic Super 8 Berry Blend
  2. 1 Tsp of Honey
  3. ¬Ĺ Cup of Almond Milk (or any milk)
  4. 2 Frozen Bananas

Delicious Toppings:

  1. Coconut Granola Clusters 
  2. Organic Black Chia Seeds
  3. Organic Almonds (Chopped)
  4. Organic Shredded Coconut
  5. Fresh Fruits (of your choice)


  1. In a high-speed blender, add frozen bananas, almond milk, honey, and Super 8 Berry Blend.
  2. Start blending on low speed till all frozen bananas are broken up.
  3. Continue blending at high speed until a smooth paste.
  4. Pour smoothie into a bowl and top with all your favorite toppings.
  5. Best enjoyed it immediately.

We hope you enjoy this healthy and refreshing smoothie today!

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September Is Childhood Cancer Awareness Month

milton harrison

When is Childhood Cancer Awareness Month?

September was designated Childhood Cancer Awareness Month to bring awareness to childhood cancer, which remains the leading cause of death by disease for children under the age of 14.

St. Jude is leading the way the world understands, treats, and defeats childhood cancer and other life-threatening diseases.

To give back Pushone will be making a donation to St. Jude Children's Research Hospital for every Pushone Box sold on our website in the month of September. 


Childhood Cancer Awareness Month facts: What Makes St. Jude unique

43 Children in the US are diagnosed with cancer every day. Treatments invented at St. Jude have helped push the overall childhood cancer survival rate from 20% to more than 80% since we opened more than 50 years ago. And we won’t stop until no child dies from cancer. St. Jude creates more clinical trials for childhood cancer than any other children's hospital in the U.S. 

Worldwide, at least 300,000 children and adolescents are diagnosed with cancer each year. 

Our global initiative with the World Health Organization aims to cure at least 60% of children with six of the most common cancers by 2030. To further advance cures, we freely share our research worldwide through data-sharing and analysis resources. Every child saved at St. Jude means thousands more are saved in your community and around the world. 

Approximately 10% of children with cancer develop the disease because they inherited a genetic mutation. St. Jude works to uncover these mutations and increase the chances of early detection and treatment. We are finding out why some cancers run in families and why certain people get more than one cancer.

More than 95% of childhood cancer survivors have significant treatment-related health issues. 

About 420,000 adults in the U.S. are childhood cancer survivors. Our groundbreaking survivorship studies provide a greater understanding of the long-term effects of pediatric cancer treatment and help researchers develop novel therapies to minimize those late effects.

To Learn More about childhood cancer: Go to


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The Starkey Hearing Foundation - Giving The Gift Of Hearing

milton harrison

Vivid Pods is excited to be partnering with the Starkey Hearing Foundation. Who gives the gift of hearing to people in need in the U.S. and around the world. We along with Starkey Hearing Foundation believe hearing is a vehicle to reflect caring and to improve the lives of individuals, their families, and communities.

Their Story - As a young man, William F. Austin, founder of Starkey Hearing Foundation, realized his true calling in life was helping people hear, and that by doing so, he could have a lasting impact on the world.

For more than 50 years, Austin has been providing the gift of hearing to people in need, and to formalize the philanthropic efforts of Starkey Hearing Technologies, he officially founded Starkey Hearing Foundation in 1984. He had a simple premise: "Alone we can't do much. Together we can change the world."

Mr. Austin built the organization on his vision‚ÄĒSo the World May Hear. With the help of thousands of volunteers and supporters over the last three decades, we have expanded our reach from Minnesota across the United States and around the world.

Starkey Hearing Foundation’s mission is to give the gift of hearing to those in need, empowering them to achieve their potential

By collaborating with governments, non-government organizations, and health leaders, our goal is to make hearing healthcare services more accessible to people around the world.

Today the foundation continues to travel the globe helping people in need, and to date have given the gift of hearing in more than 100 countries. We at Vivid Pods look forward to helping grow our cause of Giving Back by donating a percentage of each of our sales the foundation.

Together we can Make A Difference!



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Facts About Child Hunger In America

milton harrison

There is no possible excuse for children to go hungry in this country. Yet it happens - every day, in every community.

ÔĽŅAccording to the USDA, more than 11 million children in the United States live in "food insecure" homes. That phrase may sound mild, but it means that those households don't have enough food for every family member to lead a healthy life.

And that number dates from before the coronavirus pandemic. Today, projections show that 18 million children could face hunger this year.

That's why Vivid Pods donate a percentage from every sale to charity - To Fight Hunger. Join the Cause!

Poverty and Childhood Hunger

As you might imagine, hunger is a problem that most often affects children from low-income families. A common way we measure poverty is the federal poverty level, a number set by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. The federal poverty level is the minimum amount of money a family needs each year to afford the necessities of life: food, clothing, shelter, and transportation.

In 2018, the federal poverty level was $25,750 for a family of four. Of course, this number is a minimum. Families making twice that much are still considered low-income by most experts, and many struggles to make ends meet.

How many Americans live in poverty? Over 38 million, or 12% of all Americans, according to 2018 data from the U.S. Census Bureau. 15 million of those were children.

They are the most up-to-date figures, but we know that the coronavirus has had a devastating impact on the American economy and the reality is that far more Americans - including children - are facing hunger and poverty today.

For a more comprehensive understanding of food insecurity, we recommend the USDA’s annual report on Household Food Security in the United States.

Federal Food Programs

One of the most effective ways to help families and children is through federal nutrition programs. 

Some of the nutrition programs you may be familiar with are SNAP, WIC, and the national school lunch program. These are critical lifelines for families in need. 

No Kid Hungry supports these important programs, though we focus our efforts on other federal programs that we know can make an enormous difference for hungry kids, such as the school breakfast program, the national summer meals program, and the afterschool meals program.

 Together We Can Make A Difference!

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Mind And Body Fitness For Good Health

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Experience The Power Of Music! With Charitable Earbuds 

The body, mind, music, and fitness? Many people who want to get into shape don't realize there is more to fitness than well-toned muscles. There's no shortage of exercise regimes that just promote the perfection of the body, or the idea of fitness as a part of a weight loss plan.

Centuries ago, the Western culture lost its focus on the interconnectedness between the body and the mind or spirit, and how each has the power to affect the other. Cultivating a love of movement can help you get beyond the concept of¬†physical fitness as separate from mental fitness ‚Äď and toward a lifelong program of good health through mind and body fitness plus music, music makes everything better.

Whether you choose a workout, yoga,¬†or another form of movement for exercise, remember that our bodies are made to move to music and to feel good. So when you incorporate regular activity in your life, you‚Äôre moving closer to overall mind and body fitness. But if you are overweight,¬†this can be more difficult. You can improve your mind-body connection for a better mind and body fitness ‚Äď it‚Äôs just important to choose realistic fitness options.

You might consider redefining exercise as any activity that unites your body and mind and reduces your stress level. In fact, high levels of stress have been linked to weight gain, and certainly can lead to emotional eating. Finding activities that are both enjoyable and easy to do is important when developing any type of exercise plan. So when you are feeling down put on your Vivid Earbuds and listen to your favorite song.

It's important to be realistic about what we expect from ourselves. Consider your goals. Is 30 to 60 minutes on a treadmill a reasonable time frame at this point in your life? Are you setting yourself up for failure or success when you create this expectation for yourself? Would it be more enjoyable for you to do some stretching and a shorter period of time on the treadmill? 

Developing an exercise plan that fits your lifestyle and your desires is critical. Surprisingly, long-term weight loss is linked more closely to whether a person sticks to their fitness routine than to what that routine actually consists of. A routine that is gentle and pleasurable is more likely to lead to the long-term gains you are seeking. That why it is important to add music to your exercise routine, it will help to push you no matter how hard your workout is, plus it makes your workout more fun! So visit for True Wireless Earbuds designed with the features you want from the brand with a strong social conscience.

Here's to you being the Best Verison Of Yourself. Checkout this Bicep Workout by Julia Rene.

Vivid Sport Audio

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milton harrison
So along with our normal donation to the charity Feeding America (For Corvid-19), we will also be making a donation to the Black Lives Matter Foundation from every sell for the month of June. Together we can Make A Difference!

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Music Can Help Keep Your Brain Young

milton harrison
‚ÄúThere are few things that stimulate the brain the way music does,‚ÄĚ says one Johns Hopkins otolaryngologist.¬†‚ÄúIf you want to keep your brain engaged throughout the aging process, listening to or playing music is a great tool. It provides a total brain workout.‚ÄĚ

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