Matched Donations Help Feed Families Across Oklahoma - KTEN.com - No One Gets You Closer

Matched Donations Help Feed Families Across Oklahoma

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ARDMORE, OK -- The Regional Food Bank of Oklahoma recently announced its totals from its December and January food drives.

Through a million dollar holiday match from Chesapeake Energy and other corporations, the Regional Food Bank of Oklahoma raised more than $4 million to fight hunger.

The Salvation Army in Ardmore is one of many across Carter County that partners with the food bank to fight hunger year round.

"We have a soup kitchen were we feed Monday through Friday at 12:30," said Edith White. "We've actually seen an increase in that. We were serving at the end of last year right around 50 per meal. We are now upwards of 80, averaging 80 per day of feeding people."

The impact of the funds will not just help the Salvation Army, but others as well.

The food bank says, this year's donation will provide more than 20 million meals to families in 53 central and western Oklahoma counties.

"It means a lot because I know I'm not the only person and my family is not the only family in this area that this food is going to impact," said Joy Gaddis, a customer at the Salvation Army soup kitchen.

"Boy, you ain't lying, you ain't lying," said Aaron Pickens, agreeing that $4 million would purchase a lot of food.

"I'm just so thankful and blessed for those people," said Carla Anthony.

The Salvation Army will receive a portion of the $4 million to help buy food and other items.

The Salvation Army says that of all the food in their freezer, half of it is donated by the Regional Food Bank of Oklahoma.

White says, of the $3.5 million raised in last year's match, around $16,000 was sent to the Salvation Army.

This year's donation total represents a 15 percent increase from last year.

"We couldn't make it without them," said White.

The regional food bank says they usually provide 5 meals for every dollar donated.     

But with the holiday match, each dollar donated provided 10 meals.