JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — Winn-Dixie Stores, Inc. and the Jacksonville Jaguars today launched the 16th annual food drive to benefit Second Harvest North Florida. The local grocer and NFL team are calling upon First Coast residents to donate nonperishable items at Winn-Dixie stores in North Florida until Nov. 7. To kick off the food drive, Winn-Dixie donated a truck loaded with 52,000 pounds of food at a fall festival with special appearances by Jaguars players, The ROAR cheerleaders and Jaxson de Ville.
“As the official supermarket of the Jaguars, Winn-Dixie is committed to working together as a team to make a difference in the community by helping those in need,” said Dan Lafever, Winn-Dixie’s regional vice president of Central Florida.
“To put this donation into perspective, 52,000 pounds of food can provide over 40,000 meals to those less fortunate,” said Thomas Mantz, executive director of Second Harvest North Florida. “We will distribute more than 18 million pounds of food this year to meet the increased needs in our community, and we encourage everyone to help accomplish that goal.”
Football fans also can donate non-perishable items at a special collection at EverBank Field before the October 18 game against the Tennessee Titans.
Winn-Dixie Stores, Inc., is one of the nation’s largest food retailers. Founded in 1925, the Company is headquartered in Jacksonville, Fla. The Company currently operates 485 retail grocery locations, including 379 in-store pharmacies, in Florida, Alabama, Louisiana, Georgia and Mississippi. For more information, please visit www.winn-dixie.com.
About Second Harvest North Florida
Second Harvest North Florida is the oldest and largest program of Lutheran Social Services of Northeast Florida. LSS was founded in 1979 by area Lutherans and business leaders to fill gaps in services offered in the community for people in need. Second Harvest gathers food from local and national sources, shares these resources with more than 500 nonprofit organizations in 18 north Florida counties and helps thousands of people each year who are hungry or at risk of not having being able to provide food for themselves and their families. In addition to collecting and distributing food, Second Harvest serves children in after-school programs through its Kids Cafe and BackPack programs and in summer camps through its Summer Lunch program. It also takes Mobile Pantries filled with Family Boxes of food to people living in neighborhoods with the greatest needs. Call 904.730.8234 for more information about any of these programs and services.