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Bank Independent collects more than $21,776, 970 food items

Special to the Enquirer  

Bank Independent received more than $11,776 in cash donations, along with 970 items of non-perishable food, in support of the seventh annual Food Share drive campaign, this year titled Feed a Family for $5 with Food Share.   

These donations, combined with the Bank’s $10,000 debit card grocery match pledge for a total of $21,776, will be distributed to food banks across north Alabama for distribution to area families in need. 

“The charities we support throughout the year through our Helping Hands initiatives provide vital assistance to families undergoing hardships,” said Macke Mauldin, president and CEO of Bank Independent.  “Food Share allows us to focus our efforts and impact families by meeting their most basic needs. We’re grateful to the excellent local organizations who address these needs daily. We’re honored to partner with them through this drive and throughout the year.” 

Because of the coronavirus pandemicin 2020 Bank Independent engaged directly with local food banks to support their immediate needs, rather than hosting the annual drive 

For comparison to this year’s drive, the sixth annual Food Share drive, in 2019, raised more than $562 in cash donations and 9,850 non-perishable food items. 

“We could never have anticipated the overwhelming positive response to the Feed a Family for $5 campaign,” said Nikki Randolph, community engagement officer at Bank Independent. “While several businesses and private donors discreetly made large donations to the drive, the vast majority of cash donations were made $5 at a time either at one of our bank locations or through our PayPal donation option online.  

Thanks to everyone’s generous donations, we’re able to feed more than 5,000 families through Food Share collections.”   

Randolph said local food bank partners helped inspire the campaign, as the community engagement team learned that in the right hands, a simple donation of $5 can feed a family for a day.   

Sample grocery collections illustrating how much food $5 could purchase were put on display in Bank Independent drive-through windows, and Randolph credits the display reminders for moving customers to help make a positive difference through the Food Share drive.   

Donations will be distributed to local organizations that maintain food banks to fill emergency food needs, to include the Committee on Church Cooperation in Morgan County, the Neighborhood Christian Center in Decatur, the Departments of Human Resources of Lawrence and Franklin counties, Limestone County Churches Involved Inc., Sidney’s Safe! Foundation and The Meal Barrel Project in the Shoals and Manna House in Huntsville. 

As part of ongoing efforts to supplement the annual Food Share drive, the bank pledged to donate 10 cents for every Bank Independent debit card transaction made at a grocery store, up to $10,000.   

The total was met and will be distributed across the local partner organizations in conjunction with Food Share donations. 

The Food Share drive is part of Bank Independent’s Helping Hands program, which also includes employee volunteer efforts, donations and sponsorships. Other Share drives include Shelter Share to benefit animal shelters, Toy Share to collect toys for the holidays and School Share for school supplies.