Date Founded: 2017
Contact Name: Guy Harper
9dc Give Amount: $765
November 22, 2022
For many of us, the holiday season is in fact, the most wonderful time of year. It’s an opportunity to spend time with family and friends and gives us all a chance to think about how fortunate we are. But as we all know, it can also be a challenging time for many families, in particular food insecure households. This month’s Give is especially meaningful because it is directly connected to one of our own 9dollarclub members. Guy Harper is the owner of Southern Turf Supply in Lafayette, LA and has been a 9dollarclub member since December 2021. He is also a founding member of a nonprofit organization called Coalition Kitchen. Along with 3 other dads in Lafayette, Guy and his partners set out to make a difference fighting child hunger in South Louisiana.
Unfortunately over the past several years, they have seen a significant increase in food insecurity in this region. The following information was taken from a report published last year by the Center for Planning Excellence:
“Our most recent analysis reveals that, since the start of the pandemic, the number of food-insecure households in Louisiana have increased by 44%. Of these households, 69% have not had access to nutritionally adequate food in the past week. And this crisis is disproportionately affecting communities of color, in low-income neighborhoods -- families that are already living on the margins of poverty and limited socioeconomic opportunity.”
Here is a link to the full report: State of Hunger: Tracking Food Insecurity in Louisiana — Center for Planning Excellence (cpex.org)
In an effort to help, Coalition Kitchen has funded a number of summer feeding programs over the past 5 years and are in the process of building their 3rd “Food Transportation Vehicle,” where they outfit a retired ambulance to help deliver food to local schools and neighborhoods.
In their most recent endeavor, Coalition Kitchen partnered with Live Oak Elementary in Lafayette, LA to build and stock a food pantry that the children can "shop" from on Friday afternoons before they go home for the weekend. That pantry project has developed in to a new program called the “52 Shepherds Program,” where they reach out to find weekly donors to shop and deliver groceries to stock the pantry. The program is off to a great start! They are working with a local licensed dietician to provide grocery parameters to keep the food nutritious and filling and have already lined up weekly “shepherds” for the next couple of months.
What Did We Give?
Coalition Kitchen recently set a goal to raise an additional $750 before Thanksgiving to provide enough funding to triple stock the pantry for the Christmas Holidays since the kids will be out of school for 2 weeks. Coalition Kitchen is doing what they can to make sure fewer families in South Louisiana will be wondering where meals will come from during the holidays. With you contribution this month, we are honored to be able to donate $750 to fully fund this goal and we are happy to report that the pantry will be well stocked for the holidays! Guy and all the members of Coalition Kitchen asked me to pass along a very sincere thank you to all his fellow 9dollarclub members. I am sure I speak for every one of us when I say THANK YOU to Guy and Coalition Kitchen for all they are doing to help these kids!
To learn more about Coalition Kitchen, please visit their website and show your support by “liking” their facebook page and while you are liking, we encourage you to like the 9dollarclub page also :)