Launch of Backpack-a-Roo Club marks 10th Anniversary of Arvada Community Food Bank
Arvada, Colo. – The Arvada Community Food Bank is celebrating the tenth birthday of its Feeding the Future Backpack Program with the launch of the Backpack-a-Roo Club. This membership club initiative will support the food bank’s Backpack Program in Northern Jefferson County which provides sacks of food to feed 1,700 students and their families at 15 elementary schools and two Head Start programs in Arvada and Wheat Ridge during the weekend. For the price of lunch out each month, members of the Backpack-a-Roo Club will feed one child every weekend for a full school year.
A kick-off party celebrating the Backpack Program’s birthday and the launch of the Backpack-a-Roo Club will be held on Tuesday, Aug. 4, 2015 from 10 to 11 a.m. at the Arvada Community Food Bank. A highlight of the event will be a boxing match between the Backpack-a-Roo Club’s mascot and Arvada Mayor Marc Williams.
Although the Colorado economy is recovering, nearly one in four (more than 22,000) children in Jefferson County continue to face food insecurity. This is defined as the limited or uncertain availability of nutritionally adequate and safe food, according to Feeding America’s map the meal gap by county report. “We started the Feeding the Future Backpack Program to meet the needs of these children in our community,” said Arvada Community Food Bank Executive Director Sandy Martin. “The Backpack Program has graduated from one school, Foster Elementary, serving 180 kids to where it is today. In the past decade we have had the privilege of providing hundreds of thousands of weekend meals to tens of thousands of children in Northern Jefferson County.”
Hundreds of volunteers give their time each week to gather, pack and distribute weekend food and snacks for program participants. The Backpack-a-Roo Club is a way for the community to get involved and give back. “With federal budget cuts and changes to Colorado’s commodity food distribution, we have needed to increase our food purchases by more than 30 percent to meet the program’s needs,” Martin continued. “The Backpack-a-Roo Club will provide us with the funds needed to continue serving the children in our community facing food insecurity.”
The annual Backpack-a-Roo Club membership fee is $120, which can be paid via a one-time credit card payment online or set-up as a pre-authorized monthly credit card payment, among other options. The $120 approximates the cost of one child’s weekend sack for a whole year. Backpack-a-Roo Club members will receive a branded decal to display on their car, home or office, a membership card, an e-newsletter with program highlights and invitations to special events. To sign up, visit www.backpackaroo.org.
About Arvada Community Food Bank
Founded in 1982, the Arvada Community Food Bank is a nonprofit corporation formed to serve the community of Arvada and surrounding areas. Its goal is to secure the food, financial, physical and volunteer resources necessary to provide programs that meet the nutritional needs of qualifying community members. Its annual volunteers more than 700 people who provide more than 27,000 hours of service to distribute more than 500,000 tons of food each year. To learn more, visit www.arvadacommunityfoodbank.org.