BHP Billiton has announced a partnership with the West Texas Food Bank, donating $500,000 to finish out the successful “Build Today – Feed Tomorrow” capital campaign and $150,000 over the next three years to the Food 2 Kids program. The Community Kitchen in the new food bank’s headquarters will bear the company’s name.
“One of our core values at BHP Billiton is sustainability in the communities we serve,” noted Robert J. Manelis, General Manager of BHP Billiton’s Permian operations. “Key to this region’s sustainability is confronting hunger, particularly among children and the elderly. Hunger, in turn, is linked to other community issues, such as education and poverty. We have an opportunity to address hunger head on by building this partnership with the West Texas Food Bank. Funding the Food 2 Kids Program and the new Community Kitchen will have an immediate and direct impact throughout the Permian Basin.”
“The BHP Billiton gift could not have come at a better time,” stated Libby Campbell, WTFB Executive Director. “Their donation completes the 13-month campaign, putting us over our original goal and allowing us to fund the BHP Billiton Community Kitchen. Going above and beyond that donation, their second gift to the Food 2 Kids program will ensure that hundreds of kids in Reeves County don’t go hungry this year. We couldn’t be more thankful for the partnership.”
The BHP Billiton Community Kitchen will allow the Food Bank to double its Kids Café program by preparing at least 240,000 meals annually for area children. In addition, the new facility will provide space to collaborate with other community programs, such as Brown Bag Breakfasts for the homeless and job training initiatives.