Home / Community / Feeding San Diego Receives $100,000 Grant From the Cigna Foundation in Support of School Pantry Program

Feeding San Diego Receives $100,000 Grant From the Cigna Foundation in Support of School Pantry Program

Funds will be used to directly alleviate hunger amongst San Diego County students and their families

San Diego CAFeeding San Diego, the county’s leading hunger relief and food rescue organization, is honored to announce it is a recipient of a $100,000 grant from the Cigna Foundation’s Healthier Kids For Our Future® grant program, as part of a five-year, $25 million global initiative launched in 2019 focused on improving the health and well-being of children. This is the first grant the non-profit has been awarded from the Cigna Foundation. The funds will go directly towards the organization’s School Pantry program, which alleviates child hunger by providing free, nutritious food to children, youth, and their families at their schools, ensuring consistent, reliable access to healthy food in convenient locations where they are already comfortable.

Feeding San Diego’s School Pantry program is a proven program, run in partnership with local school districts, that leads to improved health, well-being, food security, and school-readiness for children while alleviating stress and improving health for the parents — even more important during the COVID-19 pandemic. Typically, School Pantries operate at 40 Title 1 elementary, middle, and high schools across twelve districts located in the US Census Bureau’s low-moderate income tracks where a high percentage of students come from low-income families and have a high incidence of health risk and low access to food assistance.

“Feeding San Diego is truly honored to receive this generous grant from the Cigna Foundation,” said Dan Shea, CEO of Feeding San Diego. “It will help us continue the vital work of supporting San Diego County students and their families. This work is even more essential as students return to classrooms this fall and families need assistance as schedules resume some semblance of normal.”

“A successful education system depends on children having healthy bodies and healthy minds, and it all starts with good nutrition and access to healthy food. We’re thrilled that this Cigna Foundation grant will help students and families in San Diego County enjoy a more nutritionally secure future,” said Gene Rapisardi, Cigna’s market president in Southern California.

The longstanding School Pantry program is Feeding San Diego’s largest hunger-relief program for children, operating in every area of San Diego County, where distributions support not only the children enrolled in the schools but also a diverse cross-section of San Diego families. The program is unique among childhood hunger-relief services because of the priority placed on fresh produce and nutritious staples, which are provided to families on a dependable schedule at familiar locations.

Since its launch in 2019, Healthier Kids For Our Future® has awarded nearly $12 million in grants to nonprofit organizations working to reduce childhood hunger and improve mental health in our country’s youth.

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