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Minnesota pro sports teams, food banks team up with a campaign to fight against hunger

ROCHESTER, Minn. (FOX 47) — Food shelves are in need, now more than ever, as people are continuing to struggle from the pandemic.

In an effort to help raise funds for Minnesota food banks, sports teams like the Timberwolves, Vikings and Twins are partnering with Second Harvest Heartland to help Minnesotans get their next meals.

Allison O’Toole with Second Harvest Heartland says we haven’t seen hunger like this since the Great Depression.

“It’s so important right now that we have the resources to help our community,” O’Toole said. “One in eight Minnesotans, including one in five Minnesota kids, now doesn’t know where their next meal is coming from.”

O’Toole says this campaign is well timed and every dollar counts.

“We’ve shown that with the right resources, we can get through this,” O’Toole said. “And it just means so much, we are so so grateful that the sports teams and this entire community across our state has stepped up to help us.”

“Now more than ever, we see the need that exists in our state and we hear the calls that those individuals that are affected,” said Brett Taber, Minnesota Vikings Social Impact Executive Director. “And so really stepping up in this time of need is something that I think drew to all the sports teams that want to come together in this moment.”

Second Harvest can turn just one dollar into three meals.

“Every single dollar counts,” O’Toole said. “Financial donations are by far the most efficient way to help us fight hunger.”

“Now with COVID-19, they got an influx at the start to help, but we’re going to see that hit now more than ever with schools starting back up as we get into the fall and winter months,” Taber said.

You can can make a monetary donation or even bid on one-of-a-kind auction items.

“Not only do we have a number of memorabilia signed by some of your favorite teams from all across Minnesota, but I think the real special ones, we are offering a premier package,” Taber said. “So, all the teams are contributing various ticket packages for when all of us are allowed to have fans in a normal environment back in our stadiums again.”

And 100 percent of the proceeds will go the Feeding America food bank network across Minnesota and parts of western Wisconsin. Second Harvest Heartland is part of that network.

The campaign will run for one week. It starts Wednesday, Sept. 23 and runs until Sept. 30. For more information or to donate, click here.

Sarah Gannon

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