I volunteered at the Inter-Faith Council for Social Services in Carrboro, NC during most of my time in graduate school, doing Spanish language intakes and packing bags of groceries. So I saw first hand what a difference TEFAP makes. I’m sure that without it we would have had to give each family less food. So I’m happy that people are organizing in defense of the program and to be able to pass on this action alert.
Info with how to call, etc. is after the break.
As we wrote to you a few weeks ago, Congress is in the process of deciding the amount that will be dedicated to The Emergency Food Assistance Program (TEFAP) storage and distribution funds for federal fiscal year 2015. TEFAP is the U.S. Department of Agriculture program that provides U.S. grown food to food banks, along with financial assistance to store and distribute food. While Congress can fund up to $100 million for TEFAP storage and distribution, it has provided only about half of this in recent years.
The congressional appropriations process is now in full swing and Appropriations Committees are making final decisions. Committee meetings are expected as soon as next week. So right now we have an important opportunity to help food banks across Oregon and the country receive additional funding and we need your help.
We need to show strong constituent support if we hope to increase funding for TEFAP storage and distribution. Please contact your members of Congress today.
Calling Congress is easy! Here’s how:
Call Feeding America’s advocacy hotline at (888) 398-8702
Listen to the pre-recorded message and enter your zip code when prompted. Connect to your Representative first.
Once you are connected to your Representative, state that you are a constituent and give your name and your hometown. Be sure to give the name of the food bank or local agency you are affiliated with as well.
Let them know you are calling about TEFAP Appropriations and deliver this important message:
As your constituent and supporter of Oregon Food Bank, I urge you to fully fund TEFAP storage and distribution at $100 million as authorized in the farm bill. This program helps the Oregon Food Bank Network get healthy TEFAP foods to struggling families in our community. With the recent cuts to SNAP and continued high need, fully funding this vital program is more important than ever.
Dial back in to make sure you talk to both of your Senators and your Representative.
Share this alert with your local networks and on social media.
Thank you for continuing to stand with us and taking time to contact Congress today. We will be in touch soon with an update about the appropriations process.
Advocacy & Community Engagement Coordinator
Oregon Food Bank