OKLAHOMA CITY – A bipartisan group of more than 80 elected officials participated in the Feeding Across the Aisle inaugural event Sept. 30 to learn more about hunger in Oklahoma and to work a volunteer shift. The event was coordinated by the Regional Food Bank of Oklahoma and the Community Food Bank of Eastern Oklahoma (the Oklahoma Food Banks). Overall, the elected officials’ efforts helped to provide nearly 6,200 meals for Oklahomans who are food insecure.
Feeding Across the Aisle, hosted Sept. 30 at the Regional Food Bank in Oklahoma City and the Community Food Bank in Tulsa, featured elected officials from city, county, state and federal levels, including Gov. J. Kevin Stitt.
“It was an honor to partner with our elected officials and state leaders to shine a light on an issue that impacts many across our state,” said Stitt. “By coming to the table and working together, we can set an example and help move the needle in the fight against hunger. I look forward to continuing to work with our state officials and organizations, such as the Regional Food Bank of Oklahoma and the Community Food Bank of Eastern Oklahoma, to make Oklahoma a top 10 state.”
Joining Stitt at the Regional Food Bank were Oklahoma City Mayor David Holt and U.S. Rep. Kendra Horn, along with more than 60 elected officials who helped packed food for the Food for Kids Backpack Program and the Commodity Supplemental Food Program boxes.
“We are so very grateful to the elected officials who took the time to cross the aisle and work together to help fight hunger in Oklahoma,” said Katie Fitzgerald, chief executive officer of the Regional Food Bank. “Hunger doesn’t care about your political affiliation. It does take the cooperation of all of our leaders to work toward a solution.”
U.S. Sen. James Lankford and U.S. Rep. Kevin Hern joined fellow elected officials at the Community Food Bank of Eastern Oklahoma to bag apples for those living with food insecurity in eastern Oklahoma.
“The tremendous response to Feeding Across the Aisle demonstrates that Oklahomans prefer working side by side to ensure the important tasks of living together in community happen,” said Ryan Walker, interim CEO of the Community Food Bank of Eastern Oklahoma. “We would like to call on all our fellow Oklahomans to follow this example of our civic leaders and continue stepping forward to fight hunger.”
In Oklahoma, one in six residents live with food insecurity every day. The majority of those served by the Oklahoma Food Banks are chronically hungry children, seniors living on limited incomes and hard-working families struggling to make ends meet. Learn more about the work done by the Regional Food Bank by visiting rfbo.org and the Community Food Bank by visiting okfoodbank.org.
Bank of Oklahoma
The Regional Food Bank of Oklahoma is leading the fight against hunger in 53 counties in central and western Oklahoma and envisions a state where everyone, regardless of circumstance, has access to nutritious food. Founded in 1980, the Regional Food Bank is the state’s largest hunger-relief 501(c)(3) nonprofit that distributes food through a network of community-based partner agencies and schools. The majority of people served by the Regional Food Bank are chronically hungry children, seniors living on fixed incomes and hardworking families struggling to make ends meet. The Regional Food Bank is a member of Feeding America, the nation’s network of food banks. To join the fight to end hunger, visit rfbo.org.
Food Bank of
Founded in 1981, the Community Food Bank of Eastern Oklahoma is one of the largest, private hunger-relief organizations in Oklahoma. With branches in Tulsa and McAlester, it distributes food to people in need through a network of 730 Partner Agencies and direct programs and in 24 counties of eastern Oklahoma.
Feeding programs include emergency food pantries, soup kitchens, shelters, disaster relief, child and senior feeding programs and veterans initiatives. In addition, the Food Bank helps raise public awareness about hunger and the role of food banking in alleviating hunger.