First Lady’s Hunger Initiative

Hunger Initiative
Hunger Initiative(Wendy Corr)
Published: May. 22, 2022 at 11:38 PM CDT
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CODY, Wyo. (Wyoming News Now) - One in five children in the state struggles with food insecurity - the uncertainty of where and when they might get their next meal.

For Wyoming’s first lady, Jennie Gordon, that’s not okay, which is why her signature program, the Wyoming Hunger Initiative, was created – to increase collaboration and participation in the fight against childhood hunger.

“We really just support programs that are already in existence around the state that fight food insecurity,” she said. “We are working with children’s groups, with veterans groups, seniors groups, and just families and pantries that are serving folks that are struggling during this time.”

Gordon was in Cody on Friday, meeting with representatives of Park County food banks, including the Cody Cupboard. Audrey Schein and her husband, Dan, lead the crew of volunteers that run the operation, which provides food to needy families and individuals.

“They can come into the cupboard and shop from the items that we have here, proteins, vegetables when they’re in season, and other non perishable items that they can take home for their family,” said Schein.

For food pantries like the Cody Cupboard, the funding they receive from the Hunger Initiative allows them to make capital purchases, as well as replenish the shelves.

“We were able to secure grants to obtain new refrigeration and freezer equipment to keep our perishable items fresh for all of our clients who come to visit the cupboard,” Schein said. “Plus, we’ve also received other grants from the hunger initiative that allowed us to provide food to our clients.”

Gordon said from her perspective, the Hunger Initiative has created an opportunity for Wyoming people to help one another.

“Get on the website, and click on your county so you can see which organizations are feeding people,” said Gordon. “Call them up, see if you can either volunteer or donate to them and just get involved because you know, Wyoming has great neighbors and we all want to help people in need.”

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