Farm Credit Illinois announced a $100,000 gift to be shared by the four Feeding Illinois food banks serving the southern 60 counties of Illinois today.
$50,000 of the total gift supports the Eastern Illinois Foodbank as it faces unprecedented challenges due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The gift will be matched with the agriculture community challenge “Harvest for Hunger” campaign by Steven and Betsy Mills of Monticello.
“The rural communities we serve are experiencing significant hardships” says Eric Mosbey, FCI Board chair. “This gift supports the important work of the Feeding Illinois food bank network as a growing number of families depend on their services for food security.”
“Even as the reliance on food banks increases, the overall food supply chain faces extraordinary challenges,” notes Wes Durbin, FCI Board vice chair. “The enormous stress – mostly at the processor level – is causing fresh food to be disposed of or destroyed on the farm and can’t get to those in need.”
“The needs of our neighbors demand we grow, and this gift from Farm Credit Illinois could not come at a better time,” says Jim Hires, Eastern Illinois Foodbank president & CEO. “Through the Mills Agricultural Match, Farm Credit’s $50,000 donation will be doubled, which brings us closer to our vision of expansion. We are grateful for their gift because it will carry us into the future and ensure we are a vital resource in eastern Illinois for years to come.”
“We are taking action to support our neighbors throughout rural Illinois,” states Aaron Johnson, FCI president & CEO. “The food supply chain and families everywhere are strained due to COVID-19. By keeping a resilient attitude and supporting each other, we can overcome these challenges together.”
Along with this gift to food banks, FCI is celebrating the frontline workers involved in the food supply chain with a social media campaign. Every link – from farmer, to processor, trucker, grocer, food bank, and restaurant – is critical to getting food on tables and #KeepingUsFed.
Farm Credit Illinois is a farmer-owned and directed agricultural cooperative serving the southern 60 counties of Illinois with competitive and flexible financing, crop insurance expertise, and Rural 1st® lending for rural life. Farm Credit Illinois manages a $4.5 billion loan portfolio, sells 1.36 million acres of crop insurance coverage, and employs 230 staff based in the Mahomet headquarters and 14 regional office locations. The U.S. Farm Credit System supports rural communities, farm families, and agriculture with reliable, consistent credit and financial services today and tomorrow.