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Feeding South Florida Working to Alleviate Hunger

By Henry J. Reske and John Bachman   |   Monday, 27 Aug 2012 10:57 AM

A South Florida food bank is helping to feed the poor by working with local farmers and retailers, Paco Velez, President and CEO of Feeding South Florida, tells Newsmax.TV in an exclusive interview.

“Feeding South Florida provides food to pretty much anybody that’s struggling to put food on the table, whether their seniors, families with multiple children, individuals – anybody that’s needing to make a decision on whether to put food on the table, pay for the rent, pay for utilities or any kind of medical situation,” Velez said.

Watch the exclusive interview here.

“A lot of the food comes from local growers. It also comes from local retailers. Publix is a huge supporter of Feeding South Florida. We also have USDA commodities that come in from the federal government and really anybody that’s willing to donate.”

Velez notes that there are misconceptions about the federal Supplemental Nutritional Assistance Program, formally known as the Food Stamp program. He said the program is geared toward the working poor, those with a job but low income. People who do not work are only able to receive SNAP benefits for three months in a three-year period.

“One of the things I’d like to get across to really everybody who doesn’t really understand SNAP or Food Stamps is that it helps the working poor,” he said. “That’s the primary target. It helps really extend their food budget, not just from what they’re able to bring in, but to bring in just a little bit more to make that healthier choice in order to serve themselves and serve their children and allow their budget to extend to helping pay for utilities and helping for their rent.

“We touch almost one million individuals over the course of the year. Out of those one million individuals, over 300,000 are children. And especially in this season where kids are trying to get back to school or they’re looking to get school supplies maybe new clothes, things like that, food is really going to be an issue for them.”

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