ECKAN – Our Partner in Fighting Hunger

Wednesday, September 17 at 05:20 AM
Category: Arvest Community News

In 1966, East Central Kansas Economic Opportunity Corporation (ECKAN) was formed to address the causes and conditions of poverty at an individualized community level. The organization stemmed from legislation passed through President Lyndon B. Johnson’s War on Poverty efforts. ECKAN is headquartered in Ottawa, Kan., and employs 100 staff across nine counties in east central Kansas. Last year ECKAN had more than 6,000 volunteer hours donated to the agency.

ECKAN’s* mission is, “To identify and focus available resources that enable eligible families and individuals to attain critical skills, knowledge and attitudes necessary to achieve self-sufficiency.” Its core programs help families overcome poverty and the need for public assistance. ECKAN is unique in its ability to tailor programs specifically to the communities it serves, in addition to offering well-known assistance programs such as Head Start, Weatherization, and the HUD Section 8 program.

ECKAN’s Community Centers also provide emergency food assistance to families living in those nine counties and distributed over 9,000 units of emergency food assistance last year. In Franklin County alone, weekly food distributions serve 90-100 individuals. The agency also provides a Summer Lunch Bunch program in an effort to alleviate food insecurity among children ages 1 – 18 during the summer months when school breakfast and lunch programs are not an option.

All these programs meet a critical need linked to the food insecurity rates as identified by Feeding America’s Map the Meal Gap (2012) in ECKAN’s service counties. Two of these counties have food insecurity rates higher than that of the state as a whole (14.8 percent).

Those interested in volunteering may do so at many of ECKAN’s locations. A variety of opportunities exist, such as working at community centers assisting with food distributions and volunteering in Head Start classrooms. Individuals interested in volunteering should contact ECKAN’s central office at (785) 242-7450 and ask for Jake to learn more about current opportunities.

To learn more about 1 Million Meals, visit arvest.com/millionmeals.

You can make a donation through any of the following methods:

  • Donate via Phone – Customers can make a $1 (or more) donation by calling (866) 952-9523.
  • Donate via Mail – Mail a check to Arvest Bank Operations, ATTN: 1MM, PO Box 799, Lowell, AR 72745. Include 1 Million Meals in the memo line of the check.
  • Purchase a Paper Can – Purchase a 1 Million Meals paper can for $1 at any Arvest Bank branch. Each paper can purchased funds five meals. Donations of larger amounts also accepted.
  • Drop Off Food Items – All Arvest Bank branch locations will be accepting nonperishable food items. Donated items will be delivered to local food partners for distribution.

Arvest will donate on your behalf if you:

  • “Like” or "Share" a 1 Million Meals post on Arvest’s Facebook page.* Arvest will donate $1 on your behalf for every Facebook "like" or "share," resulting in five more meals toward the overall goal of one million meals.
  • "Follow" Arvest on Pinterest. If you follow Arvest Bank on Pinterest,* then Arvest will donate $1, which equals five meals, on your behalf.
  • "Retweet" our 1 Million Meals tweets from @ArvestBank* on designated promotion days – Sept. 19 and Oct. 10. For every retweet on those days, we’ll donate $1, or five meals, to your neighbors in need.

Links marked with * go to a third-party site not operated or endorsed by Arvest Bank, an FDIC-insured institution.

Tags: 1 Million Meals, Cash Management, Charitable Giving, Kansas City
 

Arkansas Foodbank – Our Partner in Fighting Hunger

Wednesday, September 17 at 04:10 AM
Category: Arvest Community News

For 30 years, the Arkansas Foodbank has been filling tables and improving lives of Arkansans. What started out as a storefront to help local food pantries with storage space, has evolved into the state’s largest non-governmental provider of emergency food aid.

Using economies of scale, the food bank staff soon began acquiring and distributing the donated food more cost-effectively, splitting the loads into smaller amounts that fit the pantries’ immediate needs. The food bank operates as a distribution hub for 300 member food pantries and other hunger relief agencies in 33 counties throughout central and south Arkansas. The food bank provides high-quality, safe, healthy food to those in need. In 2013, the food bank distributed 20.9 million pounds of food, touching the lives of over 200,000 individuals. Out of that amount, 5 million pounds was fresh fruits and vegetables.

The food bank has seen many victories in the fight against hunger since 1984, thanks to their volunteers, donors and partner agencies. And while they stand on their history of achievement, it’s unfortunate food insecurity is more prevalent than ever. The time is now for all Arkansans to realize food insecurity is unacceptable and that everyone deserves a place at the table. Join us this year in our vision to create a community where no one has to go hungry. With your help, we can get more food to more families.

The Arkansas Foodbank is located at 4301 W. 65th St., Little Rock, Ark. To learn more about the organization, visit its website* or call (501) 565-8121.
To learn more about 1 Million Meals, visit arvest.com/millionmeals.

You can make a donation through any of the following methods:

  • Donate via Phone – Customers can make a $1 (or more) donation by calling (866) 952-9523.
  • Donate via Mail – Mail a check to Arvest Bank Operations, ATTN: 1MM, PO Box 799, Lowell, AR 72745. Include 1 Million Meals in the memo line of the check.
  • Purchase a Paper Can – Purchase a 1 Million Meals paper can for $1 at any Arvest Bank branch. Each paper can purchased funds five meals. Donations of larger amounts also accepted.
  • Drop Off Food Items – All Arvest Bank branch locations will be accepting nonperishable food items. Donated items will be delivered to local food partners for distribution.

Arvest will donate on your behalf if you:

  • “Like” or "Share" a 1 Million Meals post on Arvest’s Facebook page.* Arvest will donate $1 on your behalf for every Facebook "like" or "share," resulting in five more meals toward the overall goal of one million meals.
  • "Follow" Arvest on Pinterest. If you follow Arvest Bank on Pinterest,* then Arvest will donate $1, which equals five meals, on your behalf.
  • "Retweet" our 1 Million Meals tweets from @ArvestBank* on designated promotion days – Sept. 19 and Oct. 10. For every retweet on those days, we’ll donate $1, or five meals, to your neighbors in need.

Links marked with * go to a third-party site not operated or endorsed by Arvest Bank, an FDIC-insured institution.

Tags: 1 Million Meals, Arkansas, Charitable Giving, Community Support, Little Rock
 

Michelle Fittro Joins Arvest Bank in Benton County, Ark.

Tuesday, September 16 at 02:25 PM
Category: Arvest Community News

We're happy to have Michelle Fittro rejoin the Arvest marketing department in Benton County, Ark., after serving on the Arvest marketing department in Greater Kansas City for four years.

ROGERS, Ark. — Arvest Bank is pleased to announce that Michelle Fittro has joined Arvest Bank in Benton County as Marketing Manager.

Fittro rejoins Arvest Bank in Benton County after establishing and running the marketing department for Arvest Bank Greater Kansas City in 2010. She was previously a marketing officer for Arvest Bank in Bentonville from 2007 to 2010. Before joining Arvest Bank, Fittro was the development and marketing director for Ozarks Area Community Action Corporation in Springfield, Mo., and worked as a branch operations manager for National City Bank in Peoria, Ill.

“We are so pleased that Michelle can bring her experience working in a new market back to Arvest Benton County,” said Lorrie Madden, Sales Manager for Arvest Bank in Benton County. “She knows and understands the needs of local customers and continues to be a valuable asset to our Arvest team. ”

Fittro has a Bachelor of Science in communication with an emphasis in advertising and a minor in marketing from Bradley University in Peoria, Ill. She is a 2009 graduate of Leadership Benton County and a graduate of the Missouri Leadership Institute, GO Lead in Springfield, Mo., and Emerging Leaders in Kansas City, Mo.

She has served on various boards, including the Bentonville Library Foundation, Arkansas Bank Marketing Association, and the Rotary Clubs of Springfield North in Springfield, Mo., and Overland Park South in the Kansas City area. She has previously served on the Springfield, Mo., Chamber of Commerce Governmental Relations Committee and the Benton County Sunshine School’s Development Committee.

Tags: Arkansas, Arvest Benton County, Associates, Press Release
 

Ozark Share and Care – Our Partner in Fighting Hunger

Tuesday, September 16 at 06:45 AM
Category: Arvest Community News

In 1987, Ozark Share and Care was started by several local churches to provide a central place to distribute nourishing food for families. Before that, people in need of assistance would go from church to church requesting help.

The organization started out two mornings a week in a small house in Harrison, Ark., and was run by church volunteers who distributed donated food. Now Share and Care provides food for more than 700 households a month from food and monetary donations.

Ozark Share and Care helps with rent, utilities, prescription medicines and many other things needed in emergency situations in addition to providing food. In 2012, it spent approximately $65,000 assisting with emergency requests. The organization also helps with clothing, household items and furniture, as it’s available in the store.

Though it primarily serves Boone County with food, it won’t turn anyone away when food, clothing or household items are needed. When helping with rent, utilities, etc., Ozark Share and Care focuses on Boone County residents and requires clients to bring proof of income and identification for each household member. For out-of-county requests, it refers applicants to programs in their own area, if possible. In coordination with the local Rotary Club, Share and Care operates a free dental clinic and provides $300 per month to help maintain the program.

Ozark Share and Care is unique because it doesn’t receive public funds, United Way or government grants. Instead, it sells new and donated items in its thrift store to provide funding for its program. It also receives private donations as well as corporate grants and donations. To function smoothly, the organization employs four full-time staff, two part-time staff and utilizes more than 2,300 volunteers. To volunteer, drop by the thrift store and pick up an application. For additional information, contact the organization at (870) 741-3130 or email sharencare72601@yahoo.com.
 
To learn more about 1 Million Meals, visit arvest.com/millionmeals.

You can make a donation through any of the following methods:

  • Donate via Phone – Customers can make a $1 (or more) donation by calling (866) 952-9523.
  • Donate via Mail – Mail a check to Arvest Bank Operations, ATTN: 1MM, PO Box 799, Lowell, AR 72745. Include 1 Million Meals in the memo line of the check.
  • Purchase a Paper Can – Purchase a 1 Million Meals paper can for $1 at any Arvest Bank branch. Each paper can purchased funds five meals. Donations of larger amounts also accepted.
  • Drop Off Food Items – All Arvest Bank branch locations will be accepting nonperishable food items. Donated items will be delivered to local food partners for distribution.

Arvest will donate on your behalf if you:

  • “Like” or "Share" a 1 Million Meals post on Arvest’s Facebook page.* Arvest will donate $1 on your behalf for every Facebook "like" or "share," resulting in five more meals toward the overall goal of one million meals.
  • "Follow" Arvest on Pinterest. If you follow Arvest Bank on Pinterest,* then Arvest will donate $1, which equals five meals, on your behalf.
  • "Retweet" our 1 Million Meals tweets from @ArvestBank* on designated promotion days – Sept. 19 and Oct. 10. For every retweet on those days, we’ll donate $1, or five meals, to your neighbors in need.

Links marked with * go to a third-party site not operated or endorsed by Arvest Bank, an FDIC-insured institution.

Tags: 1 Million Meals, Arkansas, Charitable Giving, Community Support, North Central Arkansas
 

Samaritan Outreach Center – Our Partner in Fighting Hunger

Tuesday, September 16 at 04:35 AM
Category: Arvest Community News

In the late 1980s the need for shelter in West Plains, Mo., had increased to a point of concern for many community leaders. At the time, the rector of All Saints Episcopal Church, the Ministerial Alliance, the Ozark Community Action Agency and other community representatives met to discuss their common concern -- shelter for the homeless. They decided it would be more cost-effective to have a permanent structure to shelter the homeless rather than systems which were unable to meet the community needs. 

After extensive research, funding was gathered from multiple sources and a site was secured. Samaritan Outreach Center was originally a two-story house with 16 beds. Today it has more than 36 beds, which includes a family unit, in their facility at 715 Missouri Ave., West Plains, Mo. The facility is managed by two full-time employees and six volunteers. The Samaritan Outreach Center provides food, shelter and clothing to the homeless. 

Samaritan Outreach Center serves a seven-county area with its outreach programs including Howell, Ozark, Oregon, Shannon, Wright, Texas and Douglas counties in Missouri. In addition, its shelter has housed residential clients from nearly every state in the United States. What makes the shelter unique is it is the only one in a 100-mile radius that allows males, females and children in one facility.  It also is the only local soup kitchen operating three times a day, seven days a week. The Samaritan Outreach Center is pleased to be a 1 Million Meals partner again this year.
 
To learn more about 1 Million Meals, visit arvest.com/millionmeals.

You can make a donation through any of the following methods:

  • Donate via Phone – Customers can make a $1 (or more) donation by calling (866) 952-9523.
  • Donate via Mail – Mail a check to Arvest Bank Operations, ATTN: 1MM, PO Box 799, Lowell, AR 72745. Include 1 Million Meals in the memo line of the check.
  • Purchase a Paper Can – Purchase a 1 Million Meals paper can for $1 at any Arvest Bank branch. Each paper can purchased funds five meals. Donations of larger amounts also accepted.
  • Drop Off Food Items – All Arvest Bank branch locations will be accepting nonperishable food items. Donated items will be delivered to local food partners for distribution.

Arvest will donate on your behalf if you:

  • “Like” or "Share" a 1 Million Meals post on Arvest’s Facebook page.* Arvest will donate $1 on your behalf for every Facebook "like" or "share," resulting in five more meals toward the overall goal of one million meals.
  • "Follow" Arvest on Pinterest. If you follow Arvest Bank on Pinterest,* then Arvest will donate $1, which equals five meals, on your behalf.
  • "Retweet" our 1 Million Meals tweets from @ArvestBank* on designated promotion days – Sept. 19 and Oct. 10. For every retweet on those days, we’ll donate $1, or five meals, to your neighbors in need.

Links marked with * go to a third-party site not operated or endorsed by Arvest Bank, an FDIC-insured institution.

Tags: 1 Million Meals, Arkansas, Charitable Giving, Community Support, North Central Arkansas

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