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Bank of America Supports CAPSBC Food Bank to Address Hunger Issue

SAN BERNARDINO, CA- Last week, Bank of America awarded Community Action Partnership of San Bernardino County (CAPSBC) a grant in the amount $7,500 to help advance pathways to economic mobility. The funding will support the CAPSBC Food Bank operation, the largest provider of emergency food in San Bernardino County.

CAPSBC CEO Patricia L. Nickols-Butler stated, “There are over 400,000 people living in poverty in San Bernardino County and struggling to meet their basic needs. Food is a necessity and no one should have to worry if they will have enough food to eat. Our Food Bank ensures individuals in need are connected to available resources. Bank of America supports CAPSBC’s Food Bank not only with monetary grants, but they also have a corporate philosophy of giving back to the community through frequent employee volunteer participation at our Food Bank.

“We are honored to partner with Bank of America in alleviating poverty and building thriving communities.” “Fighting food insecurity is a critical stepping stone on the pathway to economic stability,” said Al Arguello, Inland Empire market president, Bank of America. “We are proud to partner with the Community Action Partnership of San Bernardino County to ensure that our neighbors don’t have to make the difficult choice between paying their bills and putting food on the table.”

The CAPSBC Food Bank program has been operating since 1984. Millions of pounds of food are provided each year at no charge to 175 non-profit organizations to serve the basic needs of San Bernardino County’s low-income community. The Food Bank has provided over 160 million pounds of food since its inception. Programs include:

  • USDA Commodities: Commodities are provided through a network of 120 nonprofits for emergency food distribution to eligible individuals and households.
  • Salvage Food: The Food Bank collects food and distributes these products to the low-income communities through a network of 80 nonprofit partners.
  • Congregate Feeding: A network of community nonprofits that provides nearly 75,000 hot meals each month through soup kitchens.
  • Senior Choice Nutrition Program: Fresh produce and additional healthy product is provided to eligible seniors at no-cost to the recipient in a market-style layout at a senior center or low-income senior housing facility.
  • Food Policy Advisory Council serving San Bernardino County: A collaborative of San Bernardino County agencies and individuals seeking to improve the food system, healthy food options and advocate for supportive policies.

In 2016, the Food Bank received 11,534,084 pounds of food that was valued at $19,232,871. The Food Bank program assisted 379,663 households with USDA/Salvaged Foods. It supplemented 399,839 pounds of USDA and 736,431 pounds Salvaged Foods to Soup Kitchens/Congregate Feeding Agencies which totals 1,136,298 pounds. This allowed the Soup Kitchens to serve 748,203 meals.

Anyone interesting donating to the CAPSBC Food Bank, may make a check payable to CAPSBC and mail to 696 S. Tippecanoe Ave., San Bernardino, CA 92408, or a secure donation can be made on our website at: www.capsbc.org/donate If you would like to volunteer, please e-mail: msalcido@capsbc.org or fill out a volunteer form at www.capsbc.org/volunteer

Legislative Black Caucus Celebrate Juneteenth: African America’s Real Independence Day

By CBM Newswire

The African American Civic Engagement Project in conjunction with the California Legislative Black Caucus hosted their annual Juneteenth celebration at the California Railroad Museum June 7 highlighting leadership from California’s public universities. Four African American university president’s, were honored from California State University (CSU) and California University (UC) higher education systems.

African, Chicano Student Programs Both Hit Milestone Anniversary At UCR

RIVERSIDE, CA- For 45 years, African Student Programs (ASP) and Chicano Student Programs (CSP) at the University of California, Riverside campus has been providing a home away from home for students.

“‘Our duty in life is to make a difference in others’ lives,’ that was something a mentor once told me,” said Ken Simons, the director of African Student Programs. “That inspired me to do what I do. It’s rewarding to help these students, it’s rewarding to make a difference in their lives, it’s rewarding to provide a space for these students who might otherwise feel alone on a university campus.”

Simons has been the director of ASP for the past 14 years, and he’s been connected to UCR since 1979, when he was a student athlete. He said that, for many of the first-generation black students, ASP becomes the place where they feel comfortable expressing questions and concerns – especially cultural concerns.

“I’m real with the students, I tell them what they need to hear, because I realize they might not hear it from someone else,” Simons said.

Formerly referred to as Black Student Programs, ASP is generally agreed to have formed at UCR campus in 1972, out of the campus’ Black Student Union and Black Studies Department. Over the years, ASP has become a space where students can go to gain confidence, for support, and to feel at home.

“Years after graduating, we have students reflect on the mentorship they received during their time at UCR through ASP,” Simons said. “There are countless stories from students who recall getting through the tough times because of the conversations they had with staff at the organization.”

Since 1972, ASP has been a key component for the success of black students at UCR. Earlier this year, UCR was recognized as one of the nation’s best institutions in successfully graduating black students relative to their white counterparts. While black student graduation rates lag behind white student graduation rates by about 22 percent nationally, UCR graduates black students at a rate 1.7 percent higher than white students, announced The Education Trust, a Washington, D.C.-based non-profit organization that analyzed data from four-year colleges and universities in its report, “A Look at Black Student Success: Identifying Top- and Bottom-Performing Institutions.”

At UCR, 69.5 percent of black students graduate, compared with 41 percent nationally. Simons said that success can be linked to the variety of services ASP provides its students – like, informing them about scholarships, internships, research, and graduate school and career opportunities. ASP also sponsors a variety of events and programs every year, including an academic mentorship program, and the Black Graduation Ceremony – which is Sunday, June 11 at 2 p.m. at the Student Recreation Center.

Estella Acuna has been the director of CSP since 2004, and graduated from UCR in 1999. Acuna’s goal as the director is to give UCR students what CSP provided for her.

“I was a first-generation student, and CSP provided a home away from home for me. I felt safe, I felt connected to my peers and the community – I would have a hard time surviving without the amazing staff,” Acuna said.

Like ASP, CSP was founded in 1972. According to Acuna, the creation of the space stemmed from student and faculty movement aimed at developing an organization that would meet the needs of both Raza faculty and students on campus. They wanted a space that would nourish the growing Latino/a population of first-generation scholars coming to UCR.

“We are truly like a family at CSP. There is a sense of community, and unwavering support for the students,” Acuna said.

In 2015, UCR was recognized by the White House Initiative on Educational Excellence for Hispanics as a Bright Spot in Hispanic education. As a Bright Spot, UCR is part of a national online catalog that includes over 230 programs that invest in key education priorities for Hispanics. The university was honored for its student success efforts with the College of Natural and Agricultural Science’s freshman learning communities, as well as for its ethnic parity in campus graduation rates. It is rare in higher education to have little gap between students of different ethnicities.

CSP, like ASP, holds annual events, like Semana de la Raza, the César E. Chávez 5K Run/Walk, and Raza graduation ceremony, which will be Saturday, June 10.

For more information about both student programs, visit their websites: African Student Programs, and Chicano Student Programs.