|MANHATTAN, Kan. — Kansas Agriculture Month kicked off on March 5 with the Neighbor to Neighbor statewide food drive in support of our neighbors in need and to reduce hunger in Kansas communities. Harvesters–The Community Food Bank in Topeka, Kansas, hosted state leaders, including Governor Jeff Colyer and representatives of the food banks of Kansas, Dillons Food Stores, and the Kansas agriculture community.
The food drive is a collaborative effort by the Kansas Department of Agriculture, Dillons Food Stores, Harvesters–The Community Food Network, Kansas Food Bank, Second Harvest Community Food Bank and the Kansas agriculture community. The goal is to raise 90,000 meals for Kansas families during the food drive throughout the month of March. Dillons made an initial donation of 2,500 pounds of non-perishable food items. Kansans can contribute to the campaign at Dillons Food Stores statewide, at other community locations across the state or through the virtual donation portal, http://ksn2n.harvestersvfd.org.
Governor Colyer stressed the importance of serving our neighbors in need. “This spirit of service is the very best of Kansas,” he said. “It is in the DNA of Kansans to help our neighbors in need, and this event is a perfect place to show how Kansans can make a difference in people’s lives.”
Staff from the three food banks, representatives from Dillons Food Stores, the Kansas Department of Agriculture, and other state agencies and agriculture organizations then joined together to sort produce to be distributed to Kansans in need.
“Hunger is everywhere in the state — in rural counties, suburban communities and urban neighborhoods,” said Valerie Nicholson-Watson, president and CEO of Harvesters. “Community efforts like this food drive are an important way we can help feed hungry families, children and seniors across Kansas.”
The Governor also signed a proclamation declaring March as Kansas Agriculture Month and March 20 as Kansas Agriculture Day. To learn more about the Neighbor to Neighbor statewide food drive and ways to participate in Kansas Agriculture Month, visit www.agriculture.ks.gov/ksagday.