News 9 and the Oklahoma City Zoo and Botanical Garden partnered with the Regional Food Bank of Oklahoma to fight childhood hunger by offering OKC Zoo guests half off admission from Friday, April 6, through Sunday, April 8.
Despite an extreme cold front bringing frigid temperatures and high winds, the drive raised 539 pounds of non-perishable food items for the RFBO School Pantry Program. The program provides chronically hungry middle and high school students with food to sustain them after school and over the weekends and school holidays. During the 2016-2017 school year, the School Pantry Program served 5,770 middle and high school students in 167 schools.
A drive held in January raised 315 pounds of food, bringing the total amount of food donated through the two drives held at the Zoo to 854 pounds. Oklahoma is the sixth hungriest state in the nation, where one in four children has inconsistent access to healthy food.
The Regional Food Bank of Oklahoma is the state’s largest hunger-relief organization and a member of Feeding America’s network of Food Banks. The 501(c)(3) nonprofit provides enough food to feed more than 136,000 hungry Oklahomans each week through a network of more than 1,300 schools and charitable feeding programs in 53 central and western Oklahoma counties. Since its inception in 1980, the Regional Food Bank has distributed more than 613 million pounds of food to feed Oklahomans living with hunger.
Watch the Zoo’s social media and website for information on future opportunities to donate food for discounted admission.