Friday, December 11, 2015

HOAMC to Perform at Botanica

If you don't get to see us this weekend or if you didn't get enough of us, the Heart of America Men's Chorus is performing at Illuminations at Botanica.  We will be performing at Botanica on Tuesday, December 15th from 6:30 p.m. until 7:15 p.m.

"The Most Wonderful Time of the Year" Concert Benificiary: The Kansas Food Bank

HOAMC Members help sort and pack food supplies
One of the things that the Heart of America Men's Chorus takes to heart is giving back to the community.  Many of our concerts have a beneficiary that we promote and give a portion of our proceeds to.  This concert is no different.  This Christmas concert beneficiary is the Kansas Food Bank.

About the Kansas Food Bank...

Mission Statement

Our mission is to provide comprehensive and compassionate HungerCare whenever and wherever it is needed to safeguard the health, well-being and productivity of food-insecure Kansas families and their children, as well as senior citizens, the homeless and the chronically ill and impoverished among us.


The Kansas Food Bank has the mission of providing hunger-relief whenever and wherever it is needed throughout our 85-county service area. We are committed to safeguarding the health, well-being and productivity of food-insecure Kansas families and their children, as well as senior citizens, the homeless and the chronically ill, and all who live in poverty.

We partner with hunger relief agencies across the state:  food pantries, soup kitchens and shelters to reach individuals and families who seek food assistance.  In addition the Kansas Food Bank runs several programs geared towards reaching children, families and senior citizens who experience food insecurity.  Each week we provide a meal to over 137,000 Kansans who rely on our network.

The Kansas Food Bank began operations in a rented building in 1984, serving just 16 agencies in a single county. Twenty-nine years later we are serving over 500 hunger-relief partners in 85 counties, with over 11.5 million lbs. of food distributed in the past year. We attribute our on-going growth to several moves intended to increase the number of hungry people we help, the ways in which we help, and the amount of food we distribute.
  • In 1985, the Kansas Food Bank became affiliated with Feeding America (known then as America’s Second Harvest), a national nonprofit that coordinates collection and distribution of millions of tons of food from national corporations that would otherwise be discarded as unmarketable waste.
  • To meet the demand for more nutritious, high protein food to our clients such as meat and peanut butter, we began supplementing donated food with purchased food.  We source food from numerous entities to meet the needs of our partner agencies and their pantry guests.  As manufacturers have become lean in their business practices, we find the need to purchase more food to supply our partners with.
  • In response to a state task force which reported that the number of children at risk of hunger because of lack of food available to people in poverty in rural Kansas, the food bank started a rural delivery program.  Today that program reaches all 73,000 square miles that the food bank covers.  Deliveries are made monthly to Dodge City, Garden City, Liberal, Colby, Goodland, Hays, Victoria, Great Bend, Concordia, Salina, Emporia, Junction City, Prescott, Ft. Scott and Iola. Rural delivery distribution got a big boost in 1997 when the Kansas Food Bank opened an 18,500 sq. ft. warehouse in Independence, doubling the food distributed to Southeast Kansas.
  • In 2004, the Kansas Food Bank took another significant step in serving children by launching the Food 4 Kids backpack program. Food 4 Kids is designed to fill in the weekend gap in existing feeding programs designed to serve children at the highest risk of chronic undernourishment. Specifically, Food 4 Kids provides emergency weekend food — distributed in zip-bags that can be slipped into children’s school backpacks — to kids who exhibit physical and behavioral signs of not otherwise eating on the days they are away from school meal programs. What began with 60 students in a few schools has grown into a program that now serves 7,100 children in 400 schools in 58 counties.
  • To reach under-served area of our state the Kansas Food Bank went mobile in 2011.  Mobile pantries are deployed to reach under-served areas of our state that lack pantry infrastructure.  Mobile pantries are simply a pantry on wheels.  By operating mobile units, we can effectively and efficiently reach food insecure households in rural communities.
  • SNAP Outreach also started in 2011.  Our outreach worker focuses on rural areas within our service area where Department of Children and Family Services does not have offices.  We assist low income households with the application process so they may receive monthly food benefits.
  • A commitment to increase fresh produce distribution began in 2011.  As food banking has evolved, so has the need for us to provide healthy, nutritious items.  All too often, the first thing to get cut from budgets of cash strapped families is fresh produce.  We are now providing over 1.5 million pound of fresh items throughout our distribution network.  This allows families items that are better for them, lower in sugar, calories and sodium.
  • 2012 marked the year that seniors who are too proud to seek assistance were reached with our latest program Bob Box.  Bob Box is endorsed and sponsored by Senator Bob Dole, a name trusted by all Kansans.  All too often, seniors will choose to go without food before asking for help.  Bob Box has been instrumental in reaching those seniors.  The program launched in Northwest KS and will expand to the Southwest area of our state this fall.  It has a five year roll out plan for the entire 85 counties we serve.
In all, the Kansas Food Bank has the drive and passion to reach food insecure households whenever and wherever it is needed.  We have built a complex distribution system to ensure we serve our hungry friends and neighbors.

Hunger Statistics

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HIA-2014-logo-transparent-175Largest, Most Comprehensive Analysis of Charitable Food Assistance in America Reports more than 215,000 Served by Kansas Food Bank Annually
WICHITA – August 18, 2014 – A new study by the Kansas Food Bank and Feeding America shows that 1 in 7 people, or an estimated 215,300 people, in the Kansas Food Bank’s service area turn to food pantries and meal service programs to feed themselves and their families. This includes 68,900 children and 19,900 seniors.

The Hunger in America 2014 local findings show that 22,100 people are served each week by agencies supported through the Kansas Food Bank. Accounting for multiple agency visits, 1,468,900 clients turned to Kansas Food Bank network agencies over the course of the year. This means clients are visiting Kansas Food Bank network agencies an average of 7 times a year.

The study documents household demographics and offers a snapshot of the people served by the Kansas Food Bank – their circumstances, the challenges they face and the choices they are forced to make living on extremely limited household incomes. It is also the first nationally-representative study that assesses the prevalence of past and current members of the U.S. Military and adult students receiving charitable food assistance.

Key statistics from the report for the Kansas Food Bank service area include:

  • Kansas Food Bank serves 215,300 people annually, including 68,900 children and 19,900 seniors.
  • Among all clients, 14 percent are black, 37 percent are Latino, and 42 percent are white.
  • 11 percent of adult clients are students.
  • 14 percent of households include someone who is a veteran or who has ever served in the military.
  • 82 percent of households report purchasing inexpensive, unhealthy food because they could not afford healthier options.
  • 66 percent of households report having to choose between paying for food and paying for medicine or medical care.
  • 27 percent of households include a member with diabetes.
  • 48 percent households have a member with high blood pressure.
hia2014-choicesFollowing are the choices client households reported making in the past 12 months:
  • 71 percent report choosing between paying for food and paying for utilities.
    • 35 percent of these households are making the choice every month.
  • 73 percent report making choices between paying for food and paying for transportation.
    • 35 percent of these households are making the choice every month.
  • 66 percent report choosing between paying for food and paying for medicine/medical care.
    • 30 percent of these households are making the choice every month.
  • 60 percent report choosing between paying for food and paying for housing.
    • 28 percent of these households are making the choice every month.
  • 31 percent report choosing between paying for food and paying for education expenses.
    • 15 percent are making the choice every month.
hia2014-copingMore than half of households reported using three or more coping strategies for getting enough food in the past 12 months. The frequency of these strategies among all households include:
  • 52 percent report eating food past the expiration date;
  • 14 percent report growing food in a garden;
  • 37 percent report pawning or selling personal property;
  • 82 percent report purchasing inexpensive, unhealthy food;
  • 33 percent report watering down food or drinks;
  • 55 percent report receiving help from friends or family.
  • 12 percent of respondents have faced foreclosure or eviction in the past five years.
  • Among all households served by Kansas Food Bank agencies and programs, 60 percent have at least one member who has been employed in the past year.
  • 47 percent of all households with an employed person, the person with the longest employment duration, is likely to only be employed part-time.
Hunger in America 2014 was conducted using rigorous academic research standards and was peer reviewed by a technical advisory team including researchers from American University, University of Illinois at Champaign-Urbana and the Urban Institute. Nationally, confidential responses were collected on electronic tablets by 6,000 trained volunteer data collectors.
The study was funded by The Howard G. Buffett Foundation.

How to Help

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Whether you are interested in providing money, food or time, the Kansas Food Bank can use your help!
Donate Money
Financial donations make the largest impact. Every $1 you donate can allow us to provide up to $10 worth of food to hungry Kansans. Click on the Donate Now icon for a variety of ways to make cash donations.

The Kansas Food Bank welcomes gifts of food through canned food drives. Click on the Donate Food icon if you are interested in sponsoring a good drive or want to learn where to drop off food at existing drives. And if you’d rather not haul cans around, please consider donating to one of our Virtual Food Drives.
The Kansas Food Bank depends on thousands of community volunteers to successfully distribute food to our 500+ hunger-relief partners around the state. Click on the Volunteer icon to learn how you and/or your organization can help by filling bags for the Food4Kids program and other ways.

Contact Us

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Kansas Food Bank – Cargill Cares Complex
1919 E. Douglas, Wichita, Kansas 67211
Tel: 316-265-3663
Fax: 316-265-9747

It's The Most Wonderful Time of the Year...

Thursday, December 10, 2015

A Sweet A'Fair

HOAMC was privileged to return as entertainment to "A Sweet A'Fair," a fundraiser for local people living with HIV/AIDS.  The event is held annually and was on Sept. 10th.

HOAMC a Community Partner for the Tallgrass Film Festival

In October, the HOAMC was a community sponsor for the Tallgrass Film Festival in Wichita.  The movie specifically sponsored was "Orion: The Man Who Would Be King."  Chorus member Curtis Zerr dressed in his Elvis costume from "Cowboys and Rockstars" and greeted film goers.

Thank You for Making HOAMC Bitchy Bingo Successful at Rain

HOAMC would like to thank those of you that have attended our Bitchy Bingos at Rain.  It takes a lot to keep an organization like ours functioning and we couldn't do it without your help.  Thanks to the individuals and businesses that donate prizes.  We look forward to seeing you again at Bitchy Bingo again in the new year.

HOAMC and Race for the Cure

A few years ago, HOAMC partnered up with the Susan Komen Foundation and performed "Sing for the Cure" under the direction of guest conductor Dr. Tim Selig.  HOAMC didn't stop its support of the foundation with that.  For several years, the chorus has been involved in one form or another with the "Race for the Cure."  This year, several members sang the National Anthem and Firework for the race on September 26th.  The chorus is honored to take part in this event.

HOAMC Performs at the Legacy of John Benefit Dinner for the Kansas Christian Home

The Heart of America Men's Chorus was invited to sing at the Legacy of John Benefit Dinner for "as well as the Summer 2015 show, "Red, White, and Cure." The patriotic songs from the summer concert were a particular success as members of the various military branches stood as the chorus sang their song.  It was an emotional experience for both the chorus and the dinner guests.

Following is a bit about the dinner held every year.

Legacy of John

Giving to Legacy of John is simple but it means the world to our residents. It shows you care about their quality of life and are willing to financially support their cause. You can support Legacy of John by attending the annual benefit dinner or by giving a gift each year.

Legacy of John purchased new specialized wheelchairs and other equipment. Recently, one woman needed a new lift chair, which is not covered by Medicaid. Without that new chair, she would be dependent on help from the nurses to sit up and down. She would have spent most of her time in bed or in a wheelchair, too proud to ask for help. Legacy of John did more than purchase the chair. It gave her hope, improved her mobility and preserved her dignity.

Quality of life involves much more than needed medical care. It involves every aspect of life, from making your own decisions to re-learning how to button your shirt or having safe, dependable transportation. Improving the lives of our residents is what Legacy of John is all about.

Deanne Zogleman Reflects on the Summer 2015 Show "Red, White, and Cure."