PIN receives grant from Kroger


People In Need, Inc. of Delaware County Ohio (PIN) recently received a $20,000 grant from the Kroger Foundation to support PIN’s countywide Food Insecurity Programs.

The grant from Kroger’s Zero Hunger, Zero Waste initiative supports a number of PIN’s programs aimed at the cause, including its regular Food Pantry, which serves up to 400 families each week. In addition, the organization’s Mobile Markets, Produce Markets, Weekend Backpack Program with Delaware City Schools, and groceries provided at the annual Holiday Clearing House all combat hunger within the community.

“The need in our community is incredible right now. This July, for the first time in our 42-year history, we distributed more than 50,000 meals. That only increased in August and September, and October is on track to see similar numbers,” said PIN’s Executive Director Kathy Hoff.

Services through PIN’s Food Insecurity Programs have been consistently on the rise in 2023. The months of July, August, and September set successive records in the volume of assistance provided to Delaware County.

“Our partner organizations have reported similar increases in their own programs, be it food, housing, medical, or other assistance,” Hoff said. “We need support from all avenues, and our partnership with Kroger has been an outstanding resource for PIN and those we assist.”

There are 25,000 Delaware County residents who are food insecure, unable to afford or access the proper nutrition needed to maintain a healthy lifestyle. Organizations like PIN and the Kroger Foundation partner to help fill in those gaps, especially critical for neighbors in rural areas and food deserts who do not have access to many food options.

“Kroger‘s associates in Delaware County and throughout Ohio work tirelessly every day toward our commitment to end hunger in our communities and eliminate waste across our company through Kroger’s Zero Hunger, Zero Waste plan,” said Mark Bruce, corporate affairs manager at Kroger. “Kroger’s invaluable partnerships with organizations like People in Need of Delaware County ensure all food can serve its purpose, to feed our neighbors.”

In addition to the financial support from the Kroger Foundation, its efforts to reduce food waste reroutes thousands of pounds of meat, produce, and canned goods from Delaware County’s Kroger stores to PIN. This has been a critical resource for the organization as the increase in service numbers couples with already strained resources. This has, at times, presented a challenge for PIN and their continued assistance to Delaware County neighbors in need.

“There have been times recently that we have faced empty shelves and empty refrigerators. We’ve run out of meat, fresh produce, some of our core pantry items like regular pasta have even come up short,” Hoff said. “Continuing to be part of Kroger’s Zero Hunger, Zero Waste plan has been essential in helping fill those gaps. And this grant helps us pull in other resources to take care of the rest.”

Despite the supply challenges and the occasional empty shelf, Hoff said PIN has managed to keep pace with the rising need, in no small part because of the support of the organization’s donors and grants like from the Kroger Foundation.

More information on PIN’s services can be found at Assistance through the Food Pantry is provided during their operating hours on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday each week.

Submitted by People in Need, Inc.

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