TAMPA, Fla.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Amerigroup Florida has joined Feeding America Tampa Bay and the Freddie Solomon Boys & Girls Club to battle hunger that many children experience during weekends when free lunch programs are not available.
Amerigroup associates volunteered nearly 100 hours of their time to fill 500 bags with nutritious, non-perishable food items and delivered the bags to the Freddie Solomon Boys & Girls Club at Nuccio Park, where they will be distributed to children who may not have access to food on weekends. Amerigroup also presented Feeding America Tampa Bay with a $3,500 donation that will help the Feeding America BackPack Program to continue fighting child hunger in Tampa Bay.
“Studies have proven that kids without proper nutrition have a lower capacity to learn, meaning they cannot focus on or retain what they are being taught because they are hungry,” said Thomas Mantz, executive director of Feeding America Tampa Bay. “We are so thankful to Amerigroup for helping us tackle this problem and feed the more than 250,000 kids in Tampa Bay who are at risk of going hungry.”
“Amerigroup shares a deep, mutual interest in improving the lives of children in our community, especially those whose lives are harder than most,” said Rosy Cozad, Amerigroup Florida president and chief executive officer. “We are proud of our associates for exemplifying Amerigroup’s commitment to helping people in need, and we look forward to continued efforts with our community partners to build brighter, healthier futures.”
For more than 15 years, the Feeding America BackPack Program has been helping children to access nutritious and easy-to-prepare food when their families are not able to provide. Each week, bags of food are assembled at local food banks and then distributed to children who are at risk of going hungry over the weekend.
“More than 150 children walk through the Freddie Solomon Boys & Girls Club’s doors each day, and many face tremendous challenges,” said Brad Baumgardner, Boys & Girls Clubs of Tampa Bay president and chief executive officer. “With the help of Amerigroup and Feeding America, we are reducing challenges related to hunger, so we can focus on offering a safe place where these children can learn, grow and become responsible citizens.”
The Freddie Solomon Boys & Girls Club is located in the Nuccio Park neighborhood of Tampa, an area that has experienced a surge in juvenile delinquency and has been the subject of recent redevelopment efforts. The Club operates Monday through Friday to serve youth between the ages of 5-18 years, and offers opportunities to learn about healthy lifestyles, character development, leadership and how to achieve academic success.
About Amerigroup Florida
Amerigroup Florida has provided health care coverage in the state since 2003. We currently serve 292,000 members in the Medicaid, Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) known as Florida Healthy Kids, Supplemental Security Income/Aged, Blind and Disabled (SSI/ABD), and Long-Term Care (LTC) programs. We are contracted to help people with low incomes get quality health care or long-term care in all 67 counties in the Gulf, central and south Florida regions. We also offer Medicare Advantage plans. Our associates share genuine pride in making a difference in the lives of people who might need a little help. We are fortunate to call these combined efforts our work.
About Feeding America Tampa Bay
Founded in 1982, Feeding America Tampa Bay makes a difference in the lives of thousands of people each week through its distribution to a partnership network of more than 600 faith-based and other incorporated non-profit hunger relief organizations. The food bank’s mission, “Ending Hunger, Nourishing Hope,” serves a food-insecure population of close to 700,000 residents across West Central Florida; 250,000 of those struggling with hunger in the area are children. Receiving surplus food donations from growers, manufacturers, supermarkets and organized community food drives, Feeding America Tampa Bay supplied more than 35 million pounds of food to its 10-county service area in the past year - enough to provide more than 2 million meals every month to those who would otherwise go hungry. Feeding America Tampa Bay is a member of the national Feeding America network. For more information, please visit www.feedingamericatampabay.org.
About Boys & Girls Clubs of Tampa Bay
Boys & Girls Clubs of Tampa Bay has been a positive force in the community for more than 85 years; enabling young people to become productive, responsible and caring citizens through structured programming, safe learning environments and dedicated staff. With a focus on three core priority outcomes – Academic Success, Healthy Lifestyles, and Improving Character & Leadership, Boys & Girls Clubs of Tampa Bay provides opportunities to build new skills that raise each Club Member’s belief that he or she can succeed and receive recognition for personal, social and academic accomplishments.