Photo Provided by Ozarks Food Harvest

The 22nd annual Check Out Hunger fundraiser raised a record-breaking $69,000 in donations, providing more than 276,000 meals across the Ozarks.

Dozens of local grocery stores joined Ozarks Food Harvest for the effort. Customers at the check-out line could add $1, $3, or $5 to their total and that money goes to providing meals for children, families and seniors in the Ozarks.

The fundraiser actually ended in December but the food bank had continued to receive checks from grocers through part of 2021.

You can read more with a press release below…

SPRINGFIELD, Mo.— More than 60 local grocers partnered with Ozarks Food Harvest for the 22nd annual Check Out Hunger campaign, raising a record-breaking $69,000 from customer donations to provide more than 276,000 meals across the Ozarks.

The fundraiser wrapped up at the end of December, but The Food Bank received checks from grocers throughout the first two months of 2021. This is an ideal time for Ozarks Food Harvest to receive a financial boost, as charitable donations tend to drop after the holidays.

“Our community was especially generous this holiday season,” said Denise Gibson, development and communication director at Ozarks Food Harvest. “We’re so thankful for our local grocers and their customers who have helped us provide more meals than ever before to families facing hunger in the Ozarks.”

Check Out Hunger gives shoppers the opportunity to add a $1, $3 or $5 tax-free donation to their grocery bill at the register of participating retailers during the holiday season. Participating grocers included Apple Market, Country Mart, Harter House, Hy-Vee, King Cash Saver, Price Cutter, Ramey, Rhodes Family Price Chopper, Town & Country
Supermarket and Woods Supermarket. Pyramid Foods stores, including Country Mart, King Cash Saver, Price Cutter and Ramey, have participated since 2005
and in that time have helped provide 1.1 million meals for children, families and seniors in southwest Missouri.

“We’re very excited to be able to partner up with Ozarks Food Harvest each year to help raise awareness with their Check Out Hunger campaign,” said Erick Taylor, president/CEO of Pyramid Foods. “We are the local grocer and we’re all about keeping it local by giving back to the local community. This is just one of many ways we strive to help out those in
need, especially during the pandemic. We’re always more than happy to offer our support.”

Since the fundraiser began in 1998, Check Out Hunger has raised more than $677,000 to help provide more than 3.1 million meals to The Food Bank’s network of 270 hunger-relief organizations.