Alaska Airlines #MillionMealsChallenge Reaches Maui Food Bank

April 27, 2020, 8:58 AM HST · Updated April 27, 8:58 AM
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Alaska Airlines Employee Volunteer Teddie at Auburn Food Bank during Alaska’s Week of LIFT. PC: courtesy Alaska Airlines.

Alaska Airlines and the Alaska Airlines Foundation, donated more than 1 million meals to help local food banks across the country, including the Maui Food Bank in Wailuku, in an effort to support the most vulnerable communities affected by COVID-19.

“In this difficult time, food security is a challenge for countless families, with many seeking help for the first time in their lives,” said Diana Birkett Rakow, Alaska Airlines’ vice president of external relations. “Supporting the growing demands on our local food banks is a critical need and the employees of Alaska Airlines and Horizon Air have been passionately engaged in this effort for many years.”

The Alaska Airlines Foundation recently provided more than 896,000 meals through a donation of $200,000 to 14 local food banks in Alaska, Washington, Oregon, California and Hawaiʻi.

Out of the $200,000 donation mentioned above, $40,000 went to our local food banks on four islands–$10,000 each to Hawaii Foodbank, Hawaii Foodbank Kaua‘i, Maui Food Bank and The Food Basket on Hawai‘i Island.  In addition, the Alaska Airlines Foundation contributed $20,000 to the Hawai‘i Community Foundation’s Hawai‘i Resilience Fund.

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“This is a time for our entire community to join forces and support our food banks and feed hungry families,” said Daniel Chun, Sales, Community and Public Relations Director – Hawai‘i for Alaska Airlines.  “Our community food banks are seeing a rising demand for food assistance and they’re running dangerously low on supplies.  Every dollar counts and is used to help provide nourishing meals for a child or family in need.”

In addition, due to service changes onboard and in airport lounges, the airline provided 273,000 meals through donations of fresh food to community food banks in 16 states (including local food banks in Hawai‘i).

To help double the impact, Alaska Airlines and Horizon Air launched the #MillionMealsChallenge with employees and guests. Between now and the end of May, the airlines are encouraging donations to local food banks and/or one of Alaska’s hunger relief partners to raise funds for another 1 million meals for communities in need.

“We’re thankful to have foundation funds to be able to directly support people who need it most,” said Birkett Rakow, who also serves as chair of the Alaska Airlines Foundation board of directors.

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