Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Ohio Chapter Coordinators Needed to Fight Hunger

The Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR), Division of Wildlife has collaborated with Farmers and Hunters Feeding the Hungry (FHFH) in an effort to assist with the processing costs associated with donating venison to Ohio food banks.

“Last year’s effort in Ohio was great, with 44 of Ohio’s 88 counties receiving part of the 122,221 pounds of donated meat,” said Josh Wilson, operations director for FHFH. “Our volunteer organization can still use your help as part of the state is without coordinators or meat processors.”

Anyone interested in becoming a local Ohio FHFH coordinator or a participating meat processor should visit the "Local FHFH" page at fhfh.org. The current list of coordinators along with their program names and the counties they are serving can be found there.

Prospective volunteers or meat processors can contact one of the existing coordinators to discuss time commitment or any other questions they might have about becoming a FHFH coordinator or meat processor.

Responsibilities of a local coordinator:
Organizing a network of at least one inspected, insured meat processor to cut, package and freeze the donated deer and one food bank or feeding ministry to distribute the meat to the hungry.

Developing a fundraising plan to raise the money needed to cover the meat processing and other local program expenses. FHFH will help you select some fundraising events and projects to work on and you can also approach individuals, businesses, churches, clubs and other organizations directly for support.

Promoting the program so that people can learn about FHFH and become involved as supporters and/or volunteers.

FHFH began in Maryland in 1997 after founder Rick Wilson encountered a woman along a Virginia highway looking for help loading a road-killed deer into her car to feed her children. Inspired to give hunters the opportunity to help feed the hungry, Wilson formed a program that would raise money to pay the butchering bills for hunters that donate deer.

More than 10 years later, FHFH has grown to include 130 local coordinators in 25 different states. Annual meat donation totals have topped 429,800 pounds—enough to provide meat for more than 1.72 million meals—and are expected to increase even further in the coming years.

The Ohio Department of Natural Resources ensures a balance between wise use and protection of our natural resources for the benefit of all. Visit the ODNR Web site at www.ohiodnr.com.