Raleigh, NC (STL.News) Today, Governor Roy Cooper toured MANNA Food Bank in Asheville and thanked volunteers preparing food for families in western North Carolina.

“This pandemic has underscored the important work that food banks like MANNA do to provide meals to families in western North Carolina,” said Governor Cooper.  “We cannot let people go hungry, especially in times of emergency.  My budget proposed $50 million for food help and while the legislature fell short of that amount, we will keep working with MANNA and others to get food to people who need it.”

Governor Cooper’s proposed budget allotted $50 million for food banks, emergency feeding operations and organizations that provide nutrition assistance.  The legislature appropriated $12 million exclusively to food banks in its coronavirus relief packages.

Read Governor Cooper’s budget.

“In this extraordinarily challenging time, it is essential for us to come together through public and private partnerships to lift up our neighbors who are struggling.  At MANNA Food Bank, we are grateful for our partnership with the state of North Carolina to fill the gap as we face this health and economic crisis with courage and grit,” said MANNA Food Bank CEO Hannah Randall.  “As a non-partisan organization, MANNA is a movement that celebrates our differences as we work together to overcome injustices that might divide us…because no one should be hungry.”

Throughout the pandemic, MANNA has worked to address increased food insecurity. Since March, it has distributed 10.5 million pounds of food across Western North Carolina.  At MANNA, Governor Cooper called on Congress and the President to extend the school nutrition waiver for the whole school year that has let schools serve as important hubs for feeding during this pandemic.


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