Company: Hy-Vee, Inc.
Program category: Programs Addressing Food Insecurity

Origins:

In response to major tornado damage across several Iowa communities on July 19, 2018, Hy-Vee donated meals, snacks and beverages to impacted residents and emergency workers. Hy-Vee’s outreach included 1) sending five Hy-Vee Healthy You Mobiles to Marshalltown, Iowa, and Pella, Iowa, to provide mobile meals, snacks and beverages as well as a respite area; 2) providing 840 meals to the American Red Cross’ shelter at the Marshalltown YMCA to those who were displaced; 3) providing 18,000 meals to the Red Cross for individuals in Marshalltown; 4) catering meals for 250 first responders in Marshalltown the evening of the tornado; 5) providing more than 150 meals to impacted families in Bondurant, Iowa, at the Legion Hall; and 6) establishing the Marshalltown Hy-Vee parking lot as a distribution area for several weeks for people to pick up free snacks, beverages and supplies during their cleanup efforts. In addition to meals, Hy-Vee distributed more than 111,000 bottles of water, 31,000 bottles of Gatorade, more than 1,600 cases of dried meat snack products and more than 70,000 snack and protein bars from its Marshalltown Hy-Vee parking lot as well as its Hy-Vee Healthy You Mobiles.

Contribution:

Following the wake of tornadoes in several communities in its home state, Hy-Vee looked for opportunities to serve its community members, and did so by partnering with the American Red Cross, Salvation Army, United Way and local food banks. More than 20,000 community members and first responders were served meals and/or provided relief supplies, including water and snacks. Hy-Vee donated approximately $200,000 worth of meals and supplies for neighbors in the communities affected by the tornadoes. Not only was Hy-Vee committed to aiding with food security in these communities when none was available, the Marshalltown Hy-Vee offered its parking lot to serve as the home base for the American Red Cross and Salvation Army. The store also hosted the community’s triage hospital when the hospital was shut down as well as the Billy Graham Counseling RV for those who needed emotional support during cleanup and rebuilding efforts.

Objectives:

Hy-Vee is a proud community partner. A company that operates across eight Midwestern states, the supermarket chain is well-equipped to assist its fellow neighbors and customers during times of need. Hy-Vee’s goal of getting involved in tornado relief efforts was to utilize company resources and provide an avenue to contribute to the cause in a quick and efficient manner. Program objectives were to: • Provide essential meals, food and water to individuals/families potentially facing food insecurity due to the disaster • Use company resources to help tornado victims as quickly as possible • Provide essentials (i.e. cleaning supplies, shovels, gloves) to those in need to assist with recovery efforts • Bolster community support across the state of Iowa

Impact:

Over the course of two weeks, Hy-Vee donated a combination of food, snacks, water and supplies to those impacted by the tornadoes as well as emergency workers and volunteers from across the country. From Hy-Vee’s efforts, more than 20,000 individuals were provided food assistance. This outreach effort included the following donations:

  • More than 150 meals served at the Legion Hall in Bondurant
  • 840 meals served at the YMCA in Marshalltown
  • 18,000 meals provided to the Red Cross and distributed to those in need in Marshalltown
  • 250 meals served to first responders the day of the tornado in Marshalltown
  • 111,000 bottles of water
  • 31,000 bottles of Gatorade 
  • More than 1,600 cases of dried meat snack products
  • More than 70,000 snack and protein bars Hy-Vee enlisted support from vendor

Just BARE® Chicken and partnered with the local food bank, United Way and the Salvation Army, to distribute more than 40,000 pounds of refrigerated chicken to individuals in Marshalltown in the weeks following the disaster. The total value of donations provided by Hy-Vee equated to approximately $200,000.

Quote:

Our hearts go out to all of the families impacted by this natural disaster as well as the first responders who took care of the impacted communities. We are thankful that no lives were lost. As these communities began their cleanup efforts, we wanted to do all that we could to help them recover. We hope that by delivering meals, beverages and assistance that we provided some comfort as the damage was assessed and communities began their cleanup efforts. As always, we’ll continue to work with emergency management teams, local officials and the American Red Cross to identify what needs Hy-Vee may be able to assist with when disasters strike. Randy Edeker, chairman of the board, CEO and president of Hy-Vee