Food Lion recently partnered with Second Harvest Food Bank of Metrolina to surprise 300 low-income York County senior citizens with a farmer’s market-style free shopping experience of fresh produce to help them make ends meet on Thursday, May 29. Seniors were bussed in from various locations throughout the county and converged at the York County Council on Aging in Rock Hill, S.C.
Food Lion Director of Operations Joe Ready brought in more than a dozen of Food Lion associates to volunteer for the event. Throughout the morning, seniors lined up with blue and white Food Lion recyclable bags and loaded many different types of produce such as cantaloupes, cucumbers, cabbage, apples, tomatoes, mixed salad and carrots into their bags.
The seniors were extremely appreciative. One recipient even said that the vegetables were “a God-send” for her, and that was “just her two cents.”
The surprise event was part of the agency’s promotion to honor Older Americans Month. According to agency officials, there are more than 40,000 seniors at risk of hunger in the 19-country region of North and South Carolina served by Second Harvest Food Bank of Metrolina. This number includes 4,000 seniors in York, Cherokee and Union counties.
According to Second Harvest Food Bank, more than 3,000 seniors in York, Chester and Union counties live below federal poverty guidelines and rarely get enough fresh produce.
"It is a fact that so many seniors have to choose between healthy eating and buying medications and the other costs of living," said Wendy Duda, executive director of the senior center.
Food Lion provided all the food for the event, which was organized Second Harvest Food Bank of Metrolina.
For further information: Benny L. Smith: 704-310-4077; blsmith@foodliion