Oklahoma Regional Food Bank

Dee McCants, director of advertising for Enid News & Eagle, accepts a "Thank You" from Dave Wattenbarger, community connections manager for the Regional Food Bank of Oklahoma, before Kayla Trahan, classified team leader for Enid News & Eagle, presents two checks totaling $14,071 to Wattenbarger for the Oklahoma Regional Food Bank's Food for Kids programs. The money was raised through community donations toward an annual Christmas card that publishes in the paper and benefits the program. 

Bonnie Vculek | Enid News & Eagle

For children, research shows that access to food and nutrition are essential to optimal development and proper functioning.

Annually in Enid, the generous citizens of our community dig deep in their pockets and hearts to help those who face the most basic of human needs: hunger. 

People pay $1 to have their names included on the full-page card, which is then published in the newspaper.

This year they donated a total of $14,071 for the annual Community Christmas Card. This will help aid the approximately one out of four children in Oklahoma suffering from food insecurity. All of these funds will be used to help the children of Garfield County.

Regional Food Bank of Oklahoma provides 957 unique students at 16 elementary schools in Garfield County with backpacks to ensure they have food over the weekends. Dave Wattenbarger, community connections manager for the Regional Food Bank, said the organization also serves 223 unique students at five different high schools with their school pantry program.

The program began in 2003, after Regional Food Bank officials heard of an Oklahoma City elementary student who fainted on a Monday morning while waiting in the school lunch line, due to lack of food over the weekend.

The program is funded through private donations.

Students in need of the program are identified by teachers, counselors and lunchroom workers.

During the 2015-16 school year, the Backpack Program served 18,816 elementary school students attending 512 schools across 53 central and western Oklahoma counties, providing more than 2 million meals for chronically hungry children.

Within the Food for Kids programs, Wattenbarger said they also provide for the Kids Café Program, the Summer Feeding Program and the After School Program.

Wattenbarger said the food bank is deeply appreciative for the help from caring and compassionate citizens who contributed to the Enid News & Eagle’s Community Christmas Card program in 2017.

“This type of support allow us to continue our mission of fighting hunger and feeding hope,” Wattenbarger said.

We’d like to thank everyone for contributing.

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