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November 10, 2022   •   News  

SAFE Awards $20,000 to Sacramento Food Bank & Family Services to Combat Childhood Hunger

Folsom, Calif. (Nov. 9, 2022) – SAFE Credit Union is doing its part to help curb childhood hunger by supporting Sacramento Food Bank & Family Service’s  No Student Left Hungry program as the demand for food assistance climbs in the region.

SAFE is donating $20,000 to the nonprofit’s effort to provide food for an average of 4,200 students per month who are living with food insecurity and attending seven school districts and four colleges throughout Sacramento.

“Due to the pandemic, rising inflation and other factors, the need for food assistance is as great as ever, and we wouldn’t be able to meet that surge in demand without the support of big-hearted organizations like SAFE Credit Union,” says Sacramento Food Bank & Family Services Director of Programs Karen Strach.

Since March, food bank officials say they have seen a 40 percent increase in the number of people they are serving each month.   

“When children experience hunger, they are more likely to get sick and are at higher risks of health conditions like anemia and asthma,” Strach says. “They are also more likely to miss school and receive poor grades.”

The food bank grant is awarded as part of SAFE’s grant program seeking to promote the health of residents in the greater Sacramento region.

“Supporting the No Student Left Hungry program is one meaningful step we can take to help in addressing inequities in our communities and help improve the health of individuals and those in our region as a whole,” says SAFE Community Impact Manager Amanda Merz.

Sac Food Bank at Greer ElementaryFood is distributed at Greer Elementary School as part of the Sacramento Food Bank & Family Services No Student Left Hungry program.

This grant will help fund grocery distribution to students attending schools in the Center Joint Unified, Elk Grove Unified, Galt Joint Union Elementary, Robla Elementary, Sacramento City Unified, San Juan Unified and Twin Rivers Unified school districts plus Sacramento State, American River College, Cosumnes River College and Sacramento City College. The districts and colleges were determined to each have a high concentration of students in need of supplemental food assistance.

Karen Starch photo Sacramento Food Bank & Family Services Director of Programs Karen Strach.

Strach says school-based food distributions remove many barriers to accessing food. “When students get the food they need, they have improved concentration, school performance and mental and physical health. And are more likely to thrive.”

A program that has evolved for several years, the No Student Left Hungry program reaches up to 116,000 people per year.

According to Feeding America’s most recent data from 2020, more than one in six children in Sacramento County live in food insecure households, a rate that is higher than both the state and national averages.

The grant is one of two SAFE Credit Union awarded for the third quarter of 2022 to organizations dedicated to promoting the health of residents in the greater Sacramento region. This month, SAFE is also awarding $5,000 to the Alchemist Community Development Corporation’s Community Gardens project.

SAFE annually awards $120,000 in grants in four phases focusing on its three pillars of philanthropy: veterans, healthcare, and education. For more information on SAFE Credit Union’s grants program, go to

For more information about the No Student Left Hungry program, contact Sacramento Food Bank & Family Services Director of Communications Kevin Buffalino at [email protected].

About SAFE

SAFE Credit Union has made members an integral part of its vision since 1940. Over the years the credit union has kept the focus on what really matters, putting members first, a formula that has seen SAFE grow into a leading financial institution in Northern California with $4.5 billion in assets and about 247,000 members. SAFE crafts every cutting-edge product and sterling service with members’ needs foremost in mind. In addition to banking services conveniently available through online, chat, mobile, or phone options, SAFE offers in-person services for members and small businesses at service centers across the Greater Sacramento region. SAFE is a not-for-profit, state-chartered credit union with membership open to businesses and individuals living or working in Sacramento, Placer, Yolo, El Dorado, Sutter, Butte, Nevada, Solano, San Joaquin, Contra Costa, Yuba, Amador, and Alameda counties. Insured by NCUA.

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