Philadelphia is the largest city in the state of Pennsylvania with a whopping total of 1.55 million people. That staggering number also helps make Philadelphia’s claim to fame possible, as it is the fifth largest city in the nation. Not only does that number make for a thriving metropolis, but it’s smart too. Philly is filled with passionate, work-hungry college kids who are coming from the 89 universities that surround a ten mile radius of Center City.
The next three facts are sobering:
- 1. 1 in 4 Philadelphians are going to bed hungry tonight.
- 2. Philadelphia is the 4th largest city for hunger rates in the nation.
- 3. Hunger costs the state of Pennsylvania $3.25 billion each year.
Clearly, the state of Philadelphia rests on the city’s ability to take action and win the war against hunger.
What happens when you mix the following?
- A thriving city filled with college students eager to volunteer
- Corporations looking to invest in their local community
- A desire to rid excess food production/waste
- Donations from partners and individuals
- An unyielding passion to drive hunger from communities
You find yourself at the doors of the non-profit food bank called Philabundance.
So what does this organization have to do with Bravo Group, you may ask?
After doing a bit of research on Bravo Group’s assortment of Philadelphia-based clients, I focused on any and all things related to the booming energy industry that is resurfacing in Pennsylvania. I was pleased to find out that Philly’s own petroleum manufacturer, Sunoco, has a longstanding partnership with Philabundance. With that in mind, I decided to volunteer at the non-profit this past Saturday to learn more about the partnership and its impact on the Philadelphia community. I ended up witnessing the admirable workings of one of the best run non-profits that Philly has to offer. Philabundance is a sustainable non-profit organization that serves 75,000 hungry individuals from the Philadelphia and Delaware Valley areas each week with the help of volunteers and donations.
After speaking with the Director of Volunteers, Kevin, I found that Philabundance shares a great deal of help to families in need, as well as the general community. Along with the selection of healthy produce, starches and meats Philabundance distributes,the organization offers educational programs to better serve the city. I was pleased to learn Philabundance offers a 10-week culinary arts training program to educate Philly natives. Ultimately, this program links the Philabundance “students” to internships with Philly-based restaurants, hotels, nursing homes, schools, and hospitals as a step towards a sustainable career. And, after spending last Saturday folding, filling and taping the boxes of 30,000 pounds of food at the Philabundance warehouse, I watched the generous offerings load up into the Sunoco sponsored 18-wheelers. The vehicles are just one of the many ways Sunoco’s partnership is helping to drive hunger from the city of Philadelphia.
From my conversation with Kevin I learned more about Sunoco’s partnership with Philabundance, including donations:
- $100,000 capital needs
- $200,000 in hunger relief efforts in the First Congressional District (DelVal)
- $750,000 in fuel since 2005
Philabundance’s fleet of trucks are fueled by Sunoco gas which helps the traveling of 192,000 miles a year covered in delivering over 20 million pounds of food in just the Delaware Valley.
Next time you are fueling your tank at a Sunoco gas station, I hope you can now feel assured that the hungry of Philadelphia are also being fueled with your business.
Hunger is an issue that faces PA and Philadelphia year round. Here’s how you could help drive hunger from communities:
Bravo Group, Wayne Intern