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  • Writer's pictureKelsie Papenhausen

Ascend Federal Credit Union Helps Lead Food Distribution Drive in Lebanon

Held in conjunction with longtime partner Second Harvest Food Bank, the effort delivered 22,000 pounds of food to 145 families in the area

NASHVILLE, Tenn., Oct. 25, 2023 – Ascend Federal Credit Union, the largest credit union in Middle Tennessee, announced today the successful completion of a recent mobile pantry distribution drive that provided 22,000 pounds of food to 145 families in need in Lebanon and the surrounding area. The volunteer event was held in partnership with Second Harvest Food Bank of Middle Tennessee at Immanuel Baptist Church.

“Far too many of our fellow Middle Tennesseans worry about how and when they will have their next meal,” said Ascend President and CEO Matt Jernigan, who was on hand to help distribute food at the mobile pantry. “Lebanon is a tight-knit community where people and organizations are always ready to lend a hand. Thanks to our longstanding partnership with Second Harvest and the generosity of our team members, Ascend is playing an important role in helping feed families in the communities we serve.”

Approximately 30 Ascend volunteers were present Sept. 23 to sort and distribute the food. The food distribution effort was made possible in part by Ascend’s $60,000 donation to Second Harvest to purchase a 53-foot refrigerated trailer. The trailer helped expand its distribution operation, including its Grocery Rescue Program that collects, sorts, and distributes safe-to-eat frozen meat, dairy and produce from 314 grocery stores and food donors that would otherwise be destined for a landfill.

“In Middle and West Tennessee, one in eight people, including one in seven children, struggles with hunger,” said Nancy Keil, Second Harvest Food Bank of Middle Tennessee President and CEO. “The work done in Lebanon is exactly the kind of vital community engagement we need to help our neighbors. We are honored to partner with Ascend to help overcome food insecurity in Tennessee.”

Ascend, its employees and members have participated in food drives and raised money for Second Harvest since 2018. During the past six years, they have donated more than 41,000 items and raised more than $335,000.

About Ascend Federal Credit Union

With more than 255,000 members and more than $4.1 billion in assets, Ascend Federal Credit Union is the largest credit union in Middle Tennessee and one of the largest federally chartered credit unions in the United States. Based in Tullahoma, Tenn., the member-owned financial institution offers banking, loan, retirement and investment services from its 27 branches, more than 55,000 free ATMs worldwide, digital banking portal, and mobile app. The credit union’s mission is to serve by offering financial literacy education and giving back to its communities in a variety of ways. Ascend is federally insured by the National Credit Union Administration. For more information, visit ascend.org.

About Second Harvest Food Bank of Middle Tennessee

For more than 40 years, Second Harvest Food Bank of Middle Tennessee has followed its mission to provide food to people facing hunger and work to advance hunger solutions. As a 501(c)(3) nonprofit, Second Harvest distributes food and other products to approximately 420 nonprofit partner agencies in 46 counties in Middle and West Tennessee. Our partners include food pantries, congregate meal sites, shelters, childcare facilities, senior centers, group homes, and youth enrichment programs. For more information about Second Harvest Food Bank of Middle Tennessee, its mission, and programs, please visit secondharvestmidtn.org.


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