United Way’s Third Annual Drive Nets Chester County Food Bank 23,000 Pounds of PB&J

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The Matt Gorham Group facilitated the donation of 5,058 pounds of peanut butter and jelly, and thus won the Drive for the third straight year.

When the school year ends, so do the subsidized lunches for the more than 13,000 students in Chester County who rely on them for their only guaranteed meal each day.

As a result, the Chester County Food Bank has partnered with the United Way of Chester County to help fill the shelves of neighbors in need with a pantry staple: peanut butter and jelly. The classic sandwich is a good source of protein, and is also easy for school-age kids to make for themselves without the risk of cuts or burns.

The third annual Peanut Butter & Jelly Drive, a joint effort between the Food Bank and the United Way of Chester County, recently netted a mind-blowing 23,504 pounds of the products, more than double last year’s total.

Three years ago, the United Way approached the Food Bank to see if there was a need that was going unmet. The latter mentioned that many kids who received a subsidized school lunch are often home alone in the summer, unable to cook for themselves, and as a result, there is a spike in demand for peanut butter and jelly.

Chester County Food BankThus, a partnership between the two nonprofits was born. The United Way quickly put out a call to action, mobilizing the community and its vast network of business partners to tackle the problem.

“We’re honored to shine a spotlight on this issue and do our part to fill this unmet need to address hunger issues in Chester County,” said Claudia Hellebush, CEO of the United Way of Chester County. “Once again, the community has shown its generosity of action and spirit.”

For the third consecutive year, The Matt Gorham Group won the drive, facilitating the donation of 5,058 pounds. Shire Pharmaceuticals came in a close second with 4,986 pounds.

Citadel Federal Credit Union also contributed more than a ton of PB&J.

“We would like to give a special thank you to our event media sponsor, VISTA Today,” said Chris Saello, Senior Vice President of the United Way. “Their efforts to help us get the word out to the business community was definitely a contributing factor in more than doubling our totals from last year. They are a great partner, and we appreciate their efforts on our behalf.”

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