November 19, 2008
08-193

Jennifer Tanner
Communications Specialist

Jenna Gilbert Campus Dining Marketing Manager (229) 333-7146

Campus Dining To Serve Up Goodwill at Valdosta Soup Kitchen

VALDOSTA - Valdosta State University’s Campus Dining, operated by Sodexo Campus Services, will serve more than 100 people at the Valdosta Soup Kitchen on Thursday and Friday, Nov. 20-21, in continued support to help stop hunger.

The university’s food service provider is committed to encouraging it’s employees to fight hunger in their communities and to promote hunger awareness. Each winter, thousands of Sodexo employees help raise money, donate food and serve meals in communities across the country.
“Our hope is that this event will truly make a difference for those who are just ‘getting by’ and experiencing the devastating effects of hunger,” said Rich Yokeley, Sodexo Campus Services general manager at VSU. “It presents each of us with the opportunity to reach out to help strengthen our community.”

Just last week, Campus Dining sponsored a canned food drive at VSU that helped bring in more than 3,400 lbs of food and $600 in financial donations, both benefiting America’s Second Harvest of South Georgia’s Valdosta Food Bank.

Hunger currently affects 35 million people in the U.S., including more than 12.4 million children. Since 1999, Sodexo and the Sodexo Foundation, have been committed to being a driving and creative force that contributes to a hunger-free nation, one community at a time. The Sodexo Foundation (www.helpstophunger.org) is an independent charitable organization leading the fight against hunger by supporting initiatives that focus on eliminating the root causes of hunger in the U.S.

Administrative costs are paid by Sodexo, Inc. to ensure that 100 percent of donations go directly to serving those in need.

Sodexo, Inc. (www.sodexo.com) is a leading integrated food and facilities management services company in the U.S., Canada and Mexico, with $7.3 billion (USD) in annual revenue and 125,000 employees. Sodexo, Inc. serves more than ten million customers daily in corporations, health care, long term care and retirement centers, schools, college campuses, government and remote sites. Sodexo, Inc., headquartered in Gaithersburg, Md., is a member of Sodexo Group, and funds the Sodexo Foundation (www.helpstophunger.org), an independent charitable organization that, since its founding in 1999, has made more than $9.2 million in grants to fight hunger in America.

Facts About Hunger
America’s Second Harvest defines the hungry as those who can’t buy enough food to meet basic nutritional needs. The USDA currently states that more than 35 million Americans* are at risk of hunger, including more than 12.4 million children. Sodexo’s STOP Hunger initiative takes action to raise money, increase hunger awareness and provide essential community services that really matter.

Hunger and the Working Poor
In the last decade, hunger-relief agencies have found that the greatest increase in Americans at risk of hunger has been among the working poor. Despite the strong economy and their own hard work, they often must choose between paying for food or other basic needs like shelter, health care, childcare, utilities and transportation costs. This troubling dilemma is leaving some of our most vulnerable citizens, children and the elderly, at risk of hunger. In fact, nearly half of America’s hungry are children and the elderly. The working poor (employed adults with low-paying jobs) are now the fastest-growing group at emergency food programs throughout the nation.