Food Bank, Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina, Cisco and Food Lion Team Up for 9/11 Day of Service

700 Volunteers Bag 100,000 Meals for Hunger Action Month

RALEIGH, N.C. – The Food Bank of Central & Eastern North Carolina will be joined by Triangle-area companies at 9:30 a.m. on September 11, to package 100,000 meals for families at risk of hunger. The “Sort-A-Rama Day of Service” event is held as a creative way for the community to honor the memory of those lost on 9/11 and is one of the largest volunteer projects in the area.

Presenting partners Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina (BCBSNC), Cisco and Food Lion will lead the effort to bring 700 corporate volunteers together from Bank of America, BASF, Coca-Cola, Fidelity Investments, Gregory Poole Equipment Company, Research Triangle Park, StrikeIron, RTI, SunTrust Banks, Wells Fargo, and Woodforest National Bank to sort bulk-sized bins of assorted pasta and beans into family-size portions during the Sort-A-Rama Day of Service.  

“We are extremely humbled to see hundreds of our corporate partners, some longtime and some new, honor the families who struggle to provide meals in our community in a way that honors the memory of 9/11,” said Peter Werbicki, President/CEO of the Food Bank. “We’re also grateful of the volunteers who selflessly give their time and energy in support of hunger-relief initiatives. Partnerships and actions such as these provide a strong foundation for our mission: No One Goes Hungry in Central & Eastern North Carolina.” 

Opening remarks by Dana Lange, Chair of the Food Bank Board of Directors, will be followed by Boy Scout Troop 39 presenting the colors and vocalists from BCBSNC singing the national anthem. A moment of silence will be held to remember those lost on 9/11. 

Lead executives from the presenting companies will offer brief final comments before 700 corporate volunteers begin the sorting project at 10 a.m.

  • “Cisco focuses on connecting the unconnected and supporting critical human needs for those in our community,” said Jeff Zirker, Senior Director of Global Technical Services. “Today, we are honored to connect 175 Cisco executives and employees with the Food Bank to prepare meals for families in need.” 
     
  • “9/11 is a day for finding strength and unity in our communities, and we’re very proud to serve thousands across the Triangle who would otherwise go hungry, while honoring those who fell on our nation’s darkest day,” said Kathy Higgins, Vice President, Corporate Affairs, BCBSNC.
     
  • “Food Lion’s longstanding partnership with the Food Bank of Central and Eastern North Carolina over the past five years has provided more than 49.7 million pounds of food, which has helped provide 41.4 million meals,” said Mike Hall, Food Lion’s Director of Operations for the Raleigh and Henderson areas. “We expect our associates will have a great time volunteering at Sort-A-Rama Day. Our employees enjoy helping people in creative ways, including this event.”

Corporate leaders provided additional support in the following ways:

  • BASF, BCBSNC, and Cisco will provide Sort-A-Rama Day of Service hats to all participating volunteers.
  • Food Lion donated an additional $5,000 to purchase bulk product to be sorted.
  • Gregory Poole Equipment Company donated the use of forklifts and pallet jacks for the event.

September is Hunger Action Month across the country for Feeding America food banks. The 100,000 bagged meals will be immediately available for distribution through the Food Bank’s network of partner agencies – which include food pantries, rescue missions, and soup kitchens – to feed thousands of families in the Food Bank’s 34-county service area. 

PHOTOS: 

  • Opening program participants (Food Bank, Cisco, BCBSNC, Food Lion, Food Bank agency)
  • Boy Scout Troop leading national anthem 
  • 700 volunteers sorting and bagging 100,000 meals
  • Full bins containing sorted product (beans, assorted pasta)


About the Food Bank of Central & Eastern North Carolina:
The Food Bank of Central & Eastern North Carolina is a nonprofit organization that has provided food for people at risk of hunger in 34 counties in central and eastern North Carolina for more than 30 years. The Food Bank serves a network of more than 800 partner agencies such as soup kitchens, food pantries, shelters, and programs for children and adults through warehouses in Durham, Greenville, New Bern, Raleigh, the Sandhills (Southern Pines), and Wilmington. In fiscal year 2012-2013, the Food Bank distributed nearly 52 million pounds of food and non-food essentials through these agencies. Sadly, hunger remains a serious problem in central and eastern North Carolina. In these counties, more than 560,000 struggle each day to provide enough food for their families. www.foodbankcenc.org. 

About BCBSNC:
Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina is a leader in delivering innovative health care products, services and information to more than 3.74 million members, including approximately 1 million served on behalf of other Blue Plans. For generations, the company has served its customers by offering health insurance at a competitive price and has served the people of North Carolina through support of community organizations, programs, and events that promote good health. Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina was recognized as one of the World’s Most Ethical Companies by Ethisphere Institute in 2012 and 2013. Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina is an independent licensee of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association. Visit BCBSNC online at bcbsnc.com. All other marks are the property of their respective owners.

About Cisco:
Cisco (NASDAQ: CSCO) is the worldwide leader in IT that helps companies seize the opportunities of tomorrow by proving that amazing things can happen when you connect the previously unconnected. For ongoing news, please go to http://thenetwork.cisco.com.

About Food Lion:
Food Lion, based in Salisbury, N.C., is a company of Delhaize America, the U.S. division of Brussels-based Delhaize Group (NYSE: DEG), and operates more than 1,100 supermarkets. The company employs approximately 57,000 associates delivering quality products, low prices, and service to customers in 10 Southeastern and Mid-Atlantic states. For more information, visit www.foodlion.com.

###