Bremer Bank Targeting Hunger with Special Grants
St. Paul, Minn. - August 25, 2010 - Choosing between buying food and paying the mortgage, or covering medical bills, is a tough choice being faced by more Americans as the challenging economy lingers. Bremer Bank is committed to the long-term health of its communities and ending hunger has become a top priority.
To address that need, Bremer announced this week that it is making one-time grants to nonprofits in 10 communities where it does business. These special grants are in addition to the “Taking Action Against Hunger” campaign that the bank launched in June. Armed with a $100,000 challenge grant, the bank raised more than $150,000 from employees, clients and other supporters to address local hunger needs.
“According to the Hunger in America 2010 study, twice as many people in area communities are visiting food shelves and soup kitchens than they were just five years ago,” explained Pat Donovan, president and chief executive officer of Bremer Financial Corporation. “At Bremer, we believe in building healthy communities through partnerships. We recognize there is increased need right now and by partnering with the Salvation Army, we can provide additional help during these challenging times.”
The one-time, $3,500 grants will provide local food shelves with a ‘credit’ at Second Harvest Heartland. The credits can be used by each agency toward the shared maintenance fees related to handling and transporting food. Second Harvest Heartland is a member of Feeding America, a national network of more than 200 food banks nationally. Membership provides local food shelves with access to millions of pounds of surplus food and grocery donations from manufacturers and producers throughout the country.
Grant recipients include: North Country Food Bank (Outreach Food Shelf, Alexandria); Great Plains Food Bank (Salvation Army, Grand Forks); Feed My People (Stepping Stones of Dunn County, Menomonie – formerly Interfaith Volunteers of Dunn County); Second Harvest North Central (Brainerd Salvation Army); Second Harvest Heartland Agencies (Dorothy Day, St. Paul; Centro Food Shelf, Minneapolis; Five Loaves Food & Clothing Shelter, New Richmond, Wis.; Friends for Life Food Shelf, Watertown; Catholic Charities Emergency Services, St. Cloud; Willmar Area Food Shelf, Willmar)
Bremer Financial Corporation
Bremer Financial Corporation is a privately-held, $7.6 billion regional financial services company jointly owned by its employees and the Otto Bremer Foundation (OBF). Founded in 1943 by Otto Bremer, the company is headquartered in St. Paul, Minnesota and provides a comprehensive range of banking, investment, trust and insurance services to locations in Minnesota, North Dakota and Wisconsin. OBF uses its share of dividends to distribute charitable grants to Bremer Bank communities. In 2009, more than $25 million in charitable donations were given across the Bremer footprint and employees donated more than 160,000 volunteer hours to their communities. For more information, go to bremer.com.