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Farm Credit Illinois announced a $100,000 gift to be shared by the four Feeding Illinois food banks serving the southern 60 counties of Illinois today. $30,000 of the total gift supports the Central Illinois Foodbank as it faces unprecedented challenges due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The $100,000 gift is being shared among the four Feeding Illinois food banks feeding families and communities in the southern 60 counties of Illinois.

“The rural communities we serve are experiencing significant hardships” says Eric Mosbey, FCI Board chair. “This gift supports the important work of the Feeding Illinois food bank network as a growing number of families depend on their services for food security.”

“Even as the reliance on food banks increases, the overall food supply chain faces extraordinary challenges,” notes Wes Durbin, FCI Board vice chair. “The enormous stress – mostly at the processor level – is causing fresh food to be disposed of or destroyed on the farm and can’t get to those in need.”

“We are inspired by how we’ve seen people come together to ensure that families have meals during this difficult time,” says Pam Molitoris, Central Illinois Foodbank executive director. “This generous donation gives us the opportunity to purchase nutritious products, like protein and dairy, from local and regional farmers who help feed our communities all year long, not just during times of uncertainty. We may not know what the future holds but, along with our partners, we will be there every step of the way.”

“We are taking action to support our neighbors throughout rural Illinois,” states Aaron Johnson, FCI president & CEO. “The food supply chain and families everywhere are strained due to COVID-19. By keeping a resilient attitude and supporting each other, we can overcome these challenges together.”

Along with this gift to food banks, FCI is celebrating the frontline workers involved in the food supply chain with a social media campaign. Every link – from farmer, to processor, trucker, grocer, food bank, and restaurant – is critical to getting food on tables and #KeepingUsFed.

Pictured above, from L to R: Rod Stoll, FCI vice president of marketplace engagement; Mike Lonergan, FCI Jacksonville vice president of lending; Ashley Earnest, Central Illinois Foodbank public relations manager

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Farm Credit Illinois is a farmer-owned and directed agricultural cooperative serving the southern 60 counties of Illinois with competitive and flexible financing, crop insurance expertise, and Rural 1st® lending for rural life. Farm Credit Illinois manages a $4.5 billion loan portfolio, sells 1.36 million acres of crop insurance coverage, and employs 230 staff based in the Mahomet headquarters and 14 regional office locations. The U.S. Farm Credit System supports rural communities, farm families, and agriculture with reliable, consistent credit and financial services today and tomorrow.