On Saturday, Walmart Supercenter employees sorted 93,425 pounds of food at the Food Bank! In addition to their volunteer time, Walmart donates $500 for every five associates that volunteers 5 hours of time to the Food Bank, so the effort will also result in a donation of nearly $15,000 through their Volunteering Always Pays program.

View more photos on Flickr.

Big thank you to Walmart and all their employees for helping to fight hunger in Oklahoma!!

Jamie Treadaway

Jamie Treadaway

Jamie Treadaway is the Volunteer Recruitment AmeriCorps Member at the Regional Food Bank. Contact Jamie at 405-600-3154 or jtreadaway@regionalfoodbank.org to sign up to volunteer!
Read more articles by Jamie


01

Mar

How can you fight hunger?


Jennifer Arlan, Development Manager at the Regional Food Bank of Oklahoma, visited with Oklahoma Horizons about how the public can help fight hunger in Oklahoma. Great interview!

Natalie Wright

Natalie Wright

Natalie Wright is the Marketing Coordinator at the Regional Food Bank. Natalie manages social media for the organization. Connect with her on Twitter (@rfbo) and Facebook!
Read more articles by Natalie


26

Feb


Lauren Nelson Faram

Miss America 2007 and Lawton-native, Lauren Nelson Faram, stopped by the Regional Food Bank of Oklahoma today for a tour and meeting. She is a new member of the Regional Food Bank’s Celebrity Council, a group of community leaders who have stepped up to fight hunger and become public advocates for the cause. Faram said she is particularly interested in fighting childhood hunger in Oklahoma.

Natalie Wright

Natalie Wright

Natalie Wright is the Marketing Coordinator at the Regional Food Bank. Natalie manages social media for the organization. Connect with her on Twitter (@rfbo) and Facebook!
Read more articles by Natalie


16

Feb

Pound For Pound Challenge Update – Plateaus


We hear the phrases, “I hit a wall” or “I’m at a plateau”. Merriam-Webster Dictionary defines a plateau as: a level of attainment or achievement.

Interesting. Most of us use the phrase as a negative remark – one that oozes frustration.  But maybe we should be looking at it in a different way.

I’ve used it in the negative context the last few weeks, as my weight has not changed during our weekly Pound for Pound Challenge weigh-ins. As a woman who has 80 pounds to lose and only losing 11 pounds to date – not going anywhere on the scales is extremely frustrating.

But the fact is – I have lost 11 pounds.  I haven’t gained any of it back. I haven’t quit. I haven’t given up. I need to remember that I don’t live in the Biggest Loser household. Bob and Jillian aren’t my personal trainers. I don’t have unlimited income when it comes to groceries and gym memberships. I am a working mother of two great boys who love burgers, pasta and pizza – and especially breakfast for dinner. So I need to change things up both mentally and physically. If I can choose healthier ways to prepare the meals they love, it helps all of us. If I buy and cook in bulk, then freeze meals in proper portions, I can stay within my weekly grocery budget. I need to find different – yet healthy ways – to boost my metabolism. I need to move more, sit less.

If you are finding yourself at the same weight week in and week out – which plateau is it? The one that adds negative energy and stress, or the one that empowers you to move forward?

The journey of long-term weight loss and healthy living is not a sprint – it is a marathon. It is about finding the right pace – the right pace for you.

Consider joining us and sign up for the Pound for Pound Challenge today. For every pound you pledge to lose, The Biggest Loser’s Pound For Pound Challenge will donate 14 cents to food bank in your zip code.

Updates:

Food Bank staff who have joined the challenge have lost a combined total of 65 pounds.

While Oklahoma is still in 24th place – Oklahomans have now pledged to lose 55,602 pounds!  That is 2,500 more pounds than this time last week!

- By Melanie Anthony, Grants Manager


Vegetable Poached Eggs

image001

From eatbetteramerica.com

Egg-specially Good!
Eggs supply chromium, a mineral we need in small amounts. Preliminary research suggests that people with diabetes may need a bit more chromium than others do.

Getting your “daily 5″ of veggies couldn’t be easier than in this hearty skillet egg dish loaded with the good stuff. Rating:  4 ½ stars (out of 5)

Prep Time: 20 min
Start to Finish: 20 min
Makes: 4 servings
2 cups chopped broccoli
2 cups chopped spinach (about 3 oz)
1 large onion, chopped (1 cup)
1 cup sliced mushrooms (about 3 oz)
1 medium carrot, cut into julienne (matchstick) strips (about 1/2 cup)
1 small zucchini, cut into julienne (matchstick) strips (about 1/2 cup)
3/4 cup fat-free tomato pasta sauce (any variety)
1/4 teaspoon pepper
4 eggs
1/4 cup shredded fat-free mozzarella cheese (1 oz)
1. Spray 12-inch skillet with cooking spray; heat skillet over medium heat. Add broccoli, spinach, onion, mushrooms, carrot and zucchini; cook 8 to 10 minutes, stirring occasionally, until vegetables are crisp-tender.
2. Stir in pasta sauce and pepper. Cook, stirring constantly, until thoroughly heated.
3. Make four 3-inch holes in vegetable mixture, using large spoon. Crack 1 egg into each hole. Cover; cook about 5 minutes or until egg whites and yolks are firm, not runny. Sprinkle with cheese. Serve immediately.

Nutritional Information

1 Serving: Calories 160 (Calories from Fat 50); Total Fat 6g (Saturated Fat 2g, Trans Fat 0g); Cholesterol 215mg; Sodium 350mg; Total Carbohydrate 15g (Dietary Fiber 4g, Sugars 8g); Protein 12g

Percent Daily Value*: Vitamin A 100%; Vitamin C 35%; Calcium 15%; Iron 10%

Exchanges: 1/2 Other Carbohydrate; 2 Vegetable; 1 Medium-Fat Meat Carbohydrate Choices: 1

*Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet.

Melanie Anthony

Melanie Anthony

Melanie Anthony is a Development Manager at the Regional Food Bank. She is an Oklahoma State University graduate and mother of two.
Read more articles by Melanie


09

Feb

Pound For Pound Challenge Update


“Diet” is a four letter word you know. It brings with it connotations of dread, deprivation, failure – all those things that can just change a person’s mood from great to ghastly. When most of us think of the word “diet” we think of past experience: of not losing the weight we want to, or worse, losing it and then gaining it back two-fold.

The Pound for Pound Challenge is different – or has proven so for me. It isn’t a diet. It is a movement. It is about changing lives. My personal desire to be successful and help folks in need is really making me think about what habits to change. I eat when I am hungry, not just when I’m bored. I’m being more accountable to my family and friends and getting healthy. We don’t have to have a Jillian Michaels or a Bob Harper in our face to make a change. We can do it with each other, through community, through action and through knowledge. There are so many tools out there for us now – FREE tools. Motivators, trackers, menus, exercise plans, and even just simple ways to get more active – even without going to the gym in spandex.

The Regional Food Bank staff who have joined the challenge have lost a combined total of 58 pounds. That is great! More of us are walking and getting physically active, eating proper portions, sharing meal tips and recipes – just communicating and supporting one another. Folks in the community who have joined our Facebook page are doing amazing things, too!

While Oklahoma is still in 24th place in the Pound For Pound Challenge – Oklahomans have now pledged to lose 53,101 pounds! That is 3,000 more pounds than this time last week! Listen to Brad Pitt, I mean, the Magic Man – he’ll tell you how easy it is to join! It is never too late to do something good for yourself or those in need.

Sign up for the Pound for Pound Challenge.

Join the Weekly Lunch Chat at Noon, Tuesday, February 9th in the Regional Food Bank’s staff breakroom.

- By Melanie Anthony, Grants Manager

Tomato-Basil Chicken

Tomato Basil Chicken

Full of fresh pesto flavors, this saucy chicken dish rests on a bed of hot fettuccine.
From eatbetteramerica.com

Did you know? Many different olive oils are available. Extra-virgin, from the first pressing of the olives, has a fruity flavor that doesn’t take well to heat. Go ahead and use the less-expensive pure olive oil when heating the oil.

Prep Time: 20 min
Start to Finish: 20 min
Makes: 4 servings (1 1/2 cups each)

Ingredients:
8 oz uncooked whole wheat fettuccine
2 teaspoons olive or vegetable oil
1 medium onion, finely chopped (1/2 cup)
1 clove garlic, finely chopped
3 medium tomatoes, chopped (2 1/2 cups)
2 cups cubed cooked chicken or turkey breast
3 tablespoons chopped fresh or 1 teaspoon dried basil leaves
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon red pepper sauce

Cooking instructions:
1. Cook and drain fettuccine as directed on package. Cover to keep warm.
2. Meanwhile, in 10-inch nonstick skillet, heat oil over medium-high heat. Cook onion and garlic in oil, stirring occasionally, until onion is crisp-tender. Stir in remaining ingredients except fettuccine; reduce heat to medium.
3. Cover; cook about 5 minutes, stirring frequently, until mixture is hot and tomatoes are soft. Serve over fettuccine.

Nutritional Information
1 Serving: Calories 360 (Calories from Fat 60); Total Fat 6g (Saturated Fat 1 ½ g, Trans Fat 0g); Cholesterol 55mg; Sodium 540mg; Total Carbohydrate 47g (Dietary Fiber 6g, Sugars 5g); Protein 30g
Percent Daily Value*: Vitamin A 20%; Vitamin C 15%; Calcium 6%; Iron 15%
Exchanges: 3 Starch; 0 Other Carbohydrate; 0 Vegetable; 3 Very Lean Meat; 1/2 Fat
Carbohydrate Choices: 3
*Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet.

Melanie Anthony

Melanie Anthony

Melanie Anthony is a Development Manager at the Regional Food Bank. She is an Oklahoma State University graduate and mother of two.
Read more articles by Melanie


18

Jan

Disaster Relief in Haiti


As international relief groups respond to the earthquake aftermath in Haiti, Feeding America is closely monitoring the situation and preparing for any potential involvement that member food banks may need to undertake. Though as a network, domestic hunger as the primary focus, situations so close to our shores inevitably affect our work—everything from serving refugees to sharing wisdom with our peer international nonprofit organizations.

What Feeding America is Doing
Since the earthquake struck Haiti on January 12, disaster response staff members have been engaged in numerous conversations with food bank personnel, donors, National Voluntary Organizations Active in Disaster (NVOAD) and the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA).  These organizations are each conducting daily information-sharing calls on behalf of the Department of State (including the Office of Foreign Disaster Assistance and the US Agency for International Development), which is the lead entity for response to Haiti.

Status of Federal Response
Unless the President of the United States declares a Stafford Act emergency, all reimbursements of response efforts will be made under the Economy Act via the State Department. Therefore, FEMA and State emergency managers cannot currently assign or direct others to act on their behalf unless individual agreements are established regarding reimbursement. Any “FEMA Urban Search and Rescue Teams” you read about in the news have agreements with the State Department to engage internationally. These and other federal government responses are currently focused on search and rescue.

The Potential for Significant Migration to the United States
The State Department and FEMA are preparing for a number of scenarios surrounding significant numbers of Haitian citizens migrating to the United States, but this is contingency planning and it is premature to speculate about how many people or exact locations a this time. There are, however, a few basic facts regarding travel to and from Haiti:

  • The federal government is anticipating that as many as 45,000 dual-citizenship individuals could enter the United States. The largest Haitian populations in the United States are in Florida, New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, the District of Columbia and Atlanta. All of these areas are likely to see an influx of refugees seeking support from friends and family, and Florida and New Jersey are expected to be the areas of the most significant migration. The Second Harvest Food Bank of Central Florida delivered food to Orlando International Airport yesterday evening. The food was provided to approximately 100 Haitian refugees who had earlier arrived at the airport on a charter flight.
  • As relief efforts enter the next phase in the coming weeks, the federal government is expecting a second wave of individuals migrating to the United States, largely comprising individuals whose lives have been so significantly affected by the earthquake that a fresh start in a new country is the most viable option.
  • Embassy employees are United States citizens and are thus able to return home immediately—many have begun to do so already. Fortunately, those who have returned home already have largely required only minor support thus far. Anyone seeking information about American employees in Haiti should contact the State Dept Bureau of Consular Affairs Overseas Citizen Services at 1.888.407.4747.

How You Can Help

Oklahomans are connecting on Facebook to provide information on fundraisers being held around the state. To find out about opportunities in your area, join the group OKLAHOMA’S DISASTER RELIEF EFFORT FOR HAITI, and monitor the conversation. You’ll hear about plenty of opportunities to get involved.

The response community is stressing that financial donations are strongly preferred to commodity contributions. Visit NVOAD (ww.nvoad.org), InterAction (www.interaction.org) or the Center for International Disaster Information (www.cidi.org). These  websites provide guidance on active organizations that are seeking support from the public.

The Red Cross is also accepting donations via text message to support their efforts in Haiti. Individuals can text “HAITI” to “90999” and a donation of $10 will be provided to the Red Cross (a $10 charge will appear on the sender’s phone bill).

We encourage you all to be wary of solicitations, and before making an online donation via an unfamiliar organization’s website, individuals should consult the FBI website at http://www.fbi.gov/pressrel/pressrel10/earthquake011310.htm

Steve Moran

Steve Moran

Steven Moran is the Vice President of Operations at the Regional Food Bank. Steven’s responsibilities include the areas of operations, planning, distribution, information technology, food procurement, food donor relations and disaster response among others. Additionally, Steven is immediate Past President of Oklahoma Voluntary Organizations Active in Disaster (OKVOAD) and currently serves as Treasurer.
Read more articles by Steve


More than one hundred volunteers are out in our Volunteer Center right now serving the community in need by sorting food donations in honor of MLK Day of Service. We have volunteers from the UCO Service Learning Center, Casady Schools, Crossroads Church, and Vista AmeriCorps, and they are all doing their part to honor the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. by volunteering on this National Day of Service.

Here’s a quick message from one of our volunteers!

Check out photos from the Day of Service on our Flickr.

Natalie Wright

Natalie Wright

Natalie Wright is the Marketing Coordinator at the Regional Food Bank. Natalie manages social media for the organization. Connect with her on Twitter (@rfbo) and Facebook!
Read more articles by Natalie


14

Jan

How to help in Haiti’s disaster relief efforts


By now you have all heard about the tragedy that is unfolding in Haiti in the wake of yesterday’s 7.0-magnitude earthquake. Please join us in extending your thoughts to people who are struggling in Haiti, as well as their friends and family members here in the United States and beyond.

Haiti earthquake 2010
An injured child at a Hotel in Port-au-Prince, Haiti Photograph: Ivanoh Demers/AP

While the Feeding America network of food banks is focused on domestic hunger, we should all recognize and applaud the efforts of our fellow non-profit, non-governmental, and faith-based organizations that are responding at this very moment. Many of these organizations are members of the National Voluntary Organizations Active in Disaster (NVOAD), as is Feeding America. NVOAD is working with the Federal Emergency Management Agency and InterAction, an organization that supports the coordination of international nonprofits, humanitarian relief organizations, and the Center for International Disaster Information.

If you are looking for an opportunity to help, please contact the following organizations:
• NVOAD: www.nvoad.org
• InterAction: www.interaction.org
• The Center for International Disaster Information:   www.cidi.org/incident/haiti-10a/

Steve Moran

Steve Moran

Steven Moran is the Vice President of Operations at the Regional Food Bank. Steven’s responsibilities include the areas of operations, planning, distribution, information technology, food procurement, food donor relations and disaster response among others. Additionally, Steven is immediate Past President of Oklahoma Voluntary Organizations Active in Disaster (OKVOAD) and currently serves as Treasurer.
Read more articles by Steve


  Next Entries »