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    Shaw’s to Assemble 600 Vacation Boxes for Kids

    Initiative will feed food-insecure children over winter holidays

    To ensure that children who depend on school breakfasts and lunches eat well during winter vacation, a team of Shaw’s Supermarkets associates will arrive at the Rhode Island Community Food Bank on Dec. 4 to assemble 600 vacation boxes, which will be distributed through the Providence-based food bank’s network of emergency food programs. Each box can feed a child for one week and will include healthy foods requiring little or no preparation, including cereal, macaroni and cheese, spaghetti and meatballs, fruit and grain bars, applesauce, and peaches.

    Additionally, on Nov. 29, West Bridgewater, Mass.-based Shaw’s is delivering a truckload of kid-friendly food to the nonprofit food bank, which currently serves more than 66,000 Rhode Islanders every month through its statewide programs. One in three of those served is a child under the age of 18. Food insecurity affects 15.5 percent of Rhode Islanders, more than any other state in New England.

    “This innovative program will make a big difference in the lives of Rhode Island children during winter break,” said Rhode Island Community Food Bank CEO Andrew Schiff. “Shaw’s is a terrific partner with the Food Bank. Both the company and its employees know what it means to be good citizens. They put real muscle behind their philanthropic commitment.”

    “Supporting the work the Rhode Island Food Bank does to fight hunger is important to us at Shaw’s,” added Mike Stigers, president of the chain which, along with the Osco and Star Market banners, is part of Minneapolis-based Supervalu. “Unfortunately, the need for hunger relief remains a prevalent one. This need takes on an added level of urgency when you realize the number of children impacted. This program is a great way to provide food to children during the winter break.”

    Shaw’s is acting under the auspices of the food bank’s Holiday Meal Drive, which runs through Dec. 31. The food bank aims to collect another 350,000 pounds of food before year’s end to meet increased demand for food assistance in Rhode Island.

    Shaw’s, Osco and Star Market operate 169 stores employing about 17,000 associates in five New England states.

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