AGP Florida's Virtual Food Drive

Amerigroup Tackles Hunger in Florida, Brings Virtual Food Drive to Tampa Bay

VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. (Monday, Dec. 23, 2013) – The Amerigroup Foundation supported the launch of the first Virtual Food Drive program for Feeding America in Tampa Bay. In addition, the Foundation granted more than $60,000 to 54 different organizations across Florida to help tackle hunger in the state.

“Food insecurity exists in every county in America—1 in 6 Americans face hunger in this country,” said Rosy Cozad, Amerigroup Florida president. “We’re excited to jump-start the future of food bank donations in Tampa Bay, and happy our Foundation is able to provide funds to help feed Floridians who need it the most.”

Community food drives are an important source of critical grocery items, but there are often logistical challenges associated with scheduling deliveries and pickup of food drive collection bins. The Virtual Food Drive eliminates not only the cost of containers, but also transportation and staff expenses, maximizing the value of the community’s donations. The online donation tool stretches the donated dollar, allowing the food bank to leverage its volume buying power so one dollar can provide seven meals for our neighbors who are struggling with hunger.

“The Virtual Food Drive was at the top of our wish list,” said Thomas Mantz, Feeding America Tampa Bay executive director. “We are grateful to Amerigroup for helping us better prepare this year for the outpouring of the community’s generosity this season. By offering the creativity and convenience of our Virtual Food Drive, we hope to attract new supporters to the Feeding America Tampa Bay family.”

The additional Foundation grants will benefit food banks throughout Central and South Florida, stacking shelves with items and assisting organizations where needed as they prepare to support families this holiday season and into the new year.

“Because of the Foundation’s grant, we have increased our food donations by 185 percent,” said Ana Lopez, Voice of Love Training and Development founder and president. “The funding has been more than a blessing this holiday season, helping to pay for a community freezer to help store packages of food from the growing number of families we serve.”

Since its inception in 2001, the Foundation has awarded more than $16.7 million to worthy causes across the country.

About the Amerigroup Foundation

The Amerigroup Foundation is the philanthropic arm of Amerigroup, a wholly owned subsidiary of WellPoint, Inc., and the largest corporation focused solely on meeting the health care needs of financially vulnerable Americans. The Foundation works to create healthy communities by fostering access to health care, encouraging safe and healthy children and families and promoting community improvement and healthy neighborhoods.

About Amerigroup Florida

Amerigroup Florida has provided health care coverage in the state since 2003. We currently serve 237,000 members in the Medicaid, Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP), Supplemental Security Income/Aged, Blind and Disabled (SSI/ABD), and Long-Term Care (LTC) programs. We are licensed in 67 counties in the Gulf, central and south Florida regions. We also offer Medicare Advantage plans. Our associates share genuine pride in making a difference in the lives of people who might need a little help. We are fortunate to call these combined efforts our work.

About Feeding America Tampa Bay

Founded in 1982, Feeding America Tampa Bay makes a difference in the lives of thousands of people each week through its distribution to a partnership network of more than 600 faith-based and other incorporated non-profit hunger relief organizations. The food bank’s serves a food-insecure population of close to 700,000 residents across West Central Florida; 250,000 of those struggling with hunger in the area are children. Receiving surplus food donations from growers, manufacturers, supermarkets and organized community food drives, Feeding America Tampa Bay supplied more than 35 million pounds of food to its 10-county service area in the past year - enough to provide more than a million and a half meals every month to those who would otherwise go hungry. Feeding America Tampa Bay is a member of the national Feeding America network.…because no one should go hungry.