Honda partners with Mid-Ohio Food Collective for food distribution
For more than 20 years, Honda has supported the Mid-Ohio Foodbank Collective (MOFC) in the fight against hunger and food insecurity. On Saturday, July 18, Honda volunteers partnered with the MOFC and The Ohio National Guard to distribute food to more than 350 people in the Marysville area.
This distribution comes as part of Honda’s latest community response to COVID-19.
“At Honda, we strive to be a good neighbor and support organizations, like the Mid-Ohio Food Collective, that are dedicated to improving the communities around us,” said Tom Shoupe, Honda of America Mfg. executive vice president. “These communities have supported us for four decades, and similarly we are focused on giving back, supporting local initiatives and enriching the lives of our neighbors.”
With COVID-19 restrictions and social distancing efforts in place, the distribution allowed customers to safely drive into the temporary site while volunteers placed pre-packaged food into the customers’ vehicles. During the event, Honda and its partners were able to distribute boxes of produce, protein, and other essential items to 116 families, helping feed nearly 350 individuals.
“It was very rewarding to be able to help provide nutritious food to local people going through challenging times” said Dan Nagashima, HRA volunteer.
In March of 2020, Honda launched a program to address food insecurity with a special associate matching gift program to assist food banks across the U.S. and Canada, combined with a corporate pledge. This program allowed Honda associates the opportunity to make monetary donations to food programs in their communities, which the company matched up to $1,000 per associate, which resulted in 965,000 meals.
In addition, over the last two decades, Honda has donated more than a half million dollars to MOFC. In May, Honda contributed a $45,000 grant to support the MOFC Fresh Food Initiative. In 2019, Honda volunteers also supported MOFC during Honda’s annual Week of Service in June.
Brad King, MAP associate and leader of Honda’s Veteran’s Business Resource Group, explained, “During my time at Honda, I have heard many associates repeat the mantra that we strive to be a company that society wants to exist, and I was blessed to be able to see that first hand at this event.”
The food distribution event was a great collaborative volunteering effort, engaging HAM and HRA associates along with the Honda Veteran’s BRG. Volunteers not only donated their time to an important cause, but enriched their relationships within the Honda family.
HRA volunteer, Nikki Machado said, “I love volunteering because of the people you get to meet—both the workers and those you are serving. From co-workers/veterans to National Guard volunteers to every person picking up food for themselves and neighbors, it’s awesome to understand the stories behind what brought people to come, especially during such hard times.”
“To learn and share the testimonies of the community is an incredible blessing,” said Machado. “I’m grateful to be a part of a company that prioritizes events like this.”
This event was more essential now than ever before because of the great need in Marysville and Central Ohio area.
Mid-Ohio Food Bank representative Malik Perkins said, “Food distribution is up by about 30 percent” in comparison to their numbers recorded just last year. In the midst of a global pandemic, the effects of COVID-19 have led to the increased need.
“With the multitude of challenges and worries in the world right now, having an opportunity to help members of our community reduce even some of their stress was worthwhile,” said King.