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SnackPak4Kids benefit raises $74,000

To go to bed hungry and never knowing where your next meal will come from is a horrible thing for a child to deal with. Hi-Pro Feeds, Inc. and Nutra Blend once again joined forces with the Friona and Farwell communities to make a big difference in local childrens lives with the 2nd Annual Hi-Pro Feeds the Future benefit. Due to their efforts, SnackPak4Kids in Parmer County will be able to provide much needed sustenance to children in food-insecure homes. The evening raised over $74,000 in ticket sales, silent auction, live auction, donations and points earned by Hi-Pro and Nutra Blend.

Last Saturday evening the community came together at the Country Rose for a delicious meal catered by Canna Ray and to learn more about what is being done to provide food to the children in our county.

“Drive to Feed the Kids” is a program started by Nutra Blend that gives back a portion of all sales to SnackPack4Kids in Parmer County.

Nutra Blend representative Heath Williamson stated that $72,000 in funds raised will be staying in Parmer County. He went on to explain that 13-million children were fed through SnackPak4Kids in 2015.

“The real heroes are the farmers, dairymen and producers,” stated Williamson.

He announced that SP4K beef stiks will be included with shelf stable milk, peanut butter, Pop Tarts, etc. For more information on this go to sp4kbeefstik.org.

Dyron Howell, founder of SnackPak4Kids (SP4K), was on hand for the event. He thanked everyone for their hard work and diligence toward SP4K.

Howell also thanked the coordinators for their undertaking of SP4K. The coordinators in Friona are JoBeth Gipson and Becky Jones and in Farwell McKenzie Hettinga.

Howell began combatting child hunger in 2010 by providing ten sacks of food for teacher-selected students at Will Rogers Elementary School in Amarillo. Due to his efforts the program now feeds thousands of children in the Texas Panhandle each year.

The local SnackPak4Kids program began four years ago with Gipson and Jones taking the helm. Due to their efforts a group of volunteers gather every Thursday to pack bags for local children.

Shiloh Stanley from Amarillo spoke of growing up hungry. She described how she grew up in a food-insecure home and knowing that when she went to school there would be food. Stanley spoke about making sure she ate everything on her plate at school so that she would not get hungry later.

“You are not just feeding children, you are changing their lives,” stated Stanley.

The evening concluded with door prizes being awarded and the live auction. Door prizes were won by Clint Hurst who won the football autographed by Dick Vermeil, Mike White who won the Hi-Pro cooler and the Lucky Duck winner of a Smith and Wesson .38 pistol was Terry Wilcox.

Auctioneer for the evening was Logan Harkey. The top winning item for the evening was a trip to Oahu, Hawaii that went for $12,500. The head table for 2017 was auctioned off for $3,600.

The food-insecure children of Parmer County will be provided for by the SnackPak4Kids program for another year.