FORT SMITH (KFSM)- The Arvest 1 Million Meals campaign still has three weeks left to go in the fight against hunger, but the campaign has already surpassed its goal of one million meals raised.
In a little more than a month, 1 Million Meals has raised 1,013,949 meals.
"This will help [people] all summer long through the Million Meals Program," Susan Ross, director of community relations at Clearing House said. "It's going to be a big boost for us where we can help a lot more people and help them better than we could before."
Ross said the campaign comes at the right time of the year.
"This time of the year is hard for a lot of people, especially families with children getting out of school," Ross said. "They don't have that breakfast and lunch at school to rely on to feed their children. They have them now for three meals a day, seven days a week and some of them just do not have the funds to be able to do it."
Ross said she is no stranger to the help the Clearing House provides. Her family visited the pantry while displaced during Hurricane Rita.
"The Red Cross referred us to the Clearing House," Ross said. "We were treated very well. They helped with diapers, they helped us with food, and a lot of referrals to things we could do while we were here."
With three weeks left in the 1 Million Meals campaign, the Clearing House is excited to see how many more meals will be raised to help feed local families.
"It just gives our pantry a boos that we just would not have otherwise," Ross said. "It's not really the giving time of the year for a lot of folks. With kids getting out of school, older folks having to pay for higher electric bills just to stay cool and buy medication, there's just no money there to buy the food that they need."
The 1 Million Meals initiative is a two-month, bank-wide effort to provide one million meals or more to those in need. Every donation supports local families.
Arvest and 5NEWS are asking members of our communities to help where they can. Through June 3, you can purchase a paper forks for $1 at local Arvest branch locations or drop off non-perishable food items at your nearest branch.
Every dollar raised through the campaign is equivalent to five meals for those in need.
For more information about 1 Million Meals, visit the Arvest website.