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December 23, 2011 > Walmart Foundation announces grants to East Bay organizations

Walmart Foundation announces grants to East Bay organizations

Submitted By Ashley Robinson

The Walmart Foundation's California State Giving Program announced it has provided $76,000 to East Bay Area community organizations: Hope 4 the Heart, YMCA of the East Bay, and Girls Inc. of Alameda County. These grants will support hunger relief efforts and nutrition education for thousands of children and their families in the region.

"As part of Walmart's commitment to hunger relief, we also want to help ensure that young people have the information they need to help make decisions that will impact their long-term quality of life," said Debbie Rood, Regional General Manager for Walmart. "We are pleased to be supporting organizations that have created solutions aimed at addressing the hunger and health epidemics here in the Bay Area."

Hope 4 the Heart, a food bank located in Cherryland, an unincorporated area of Alameda County, will use its grant of $26,338 to purchase a new forklift. The new equipment will help move the thousands of pallets of perishable and non-perishable donations the organization provides to soup kitchens, schools, and nonprofit agencies that feed the hungry.

"The new forklift will allow us to handle the products more efficiently and get them to the thousands of families in the Bay Area who face the greatest need," said Victoria Popejoy of Hope 4 the Heart. "We are grateful to the Walmart Foundation for helping us accomplish our mission of alleviating hunger and improving nutrition."

The Downtown Oakland YMCA, a branch of the YMCA of the East Bay was granted $25,000 in order to establish the Y Camp Food Revolution, which will provide 500 healthy meals and 500 healthy snacks to every camper and camp counselor all summer long. This is in an overall effort to combat the spread of obesity and chronic diseases such as diabetes and heart disease through proper nutrition and increased physical activity.

"We are so appreciative that the Walmart Foundation has joined in our efforts to turn the tide against the obesity epidemic. This grant will help solidify our partnership with Revolution Foods to ensure that every child's camp experience will be enriched with nutritious food and a space to learn about healthy living," said Kathleen Gushoney, Executive Director of the Downtown Oakland YMCA.

Girls Inc. of Alameda County also received $25,000 to start a new program called the "Healthy Girls, Healthy Families Initiative" where girls are taught the importance of healthy eating, activity, and the need for nutrient-rich fuel. By helping girls who are at risk for serious health problems due to weight or a primarily sedentary lifestyle, this program takes a stand against obesity and encourages a positive body image, confidence, and strong self-esteem.

"We are excited to offer a program that will change the lives of young girls by fostering healthy habits that will continue for years to come. With the help of Walmart and the Walmart Foundation, girls and families in Alameda County will gain increased knowledge of healthy behaviors, have greater access to and will be more likely to choose fresh fruits/vegetables, and will build interest in and engage in more physical activity," stated Linda Boessenecker, CEO of Girls Incorporated of Alameda County.

The contributions to these organizations were made possible through the Walmart Foundation's California State Giving Program. Through this program, the Walmart Foundation supports organizations that create opportunities so people can live better. The Walmart Foundation State Giving Program strives to award grants that have a long-lasting, positive impact on communities across the U.S.
In 2010, Walmart gave more than $21.6 million to California organizations, supporting nonprofits like Hispanic Foundation of Silicon Valley, GRID Alternatives, Alameda County Community Food Bank, Westcoast Children's Clinic, and JobTrain, Inc.

To be considered for support, perspective grantee organizations must submit applications through the Walmart Foundation State Giving Program's online grant application. Applicants must have a current 501(c)(3) tax-exempt status in order to meet the program's minimum eligibility criteria. Additional information about the program's funding guidelines and application process are available online at www.walmartfoundation.org/stategiving.

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