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MATTOON -- The University of Illinois Extension and Eastern Illinois Foodbank will be teaming up to distribute a truckload of food to hungry area families.

The distribution will be held at St. John’s Lutheran Church, 200 Charleston Ave., in Mattoon from 10–11:30 a.m. Saturday.

All Coles County residents who meet income eligibility criteria are welcome. Those attending are asked to bring boxes or bags to transport food. This foodmobile is sponsored by the University of Illinois Extension.

In addition to the food distribution, the event will feature gardening and food demonstrations, live music and the distribution of tomato plants.

The distribution is part of the Foodbank’s Foodmobile Program, a system of mobile food pantries designed to help bring nutritious food to areas of chronic or extreme need.

Through the program, local companies and organizations are invited to contribute toward a one-day distribution of food and optionally participate in the distribution process. The cost to partner with the Foodbank on a Foodmobile distribution is $3,000.

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The Foodmobile distribution comes at a critical moment for area residents. Data released by Feeding America, the nation’s network of food banks, shows that 14 percent of people in Eastern Illinois are considered food insecure, which means they sometimes lack adequate access to food. More shockingly, nearly 20 percent of children are food insecure.

To be eligible, a household must have an income at or below 185 percent of the federal poverty level, or approximately $3,793 per month for a family of four. Full eligibility criteria are listed below. Other area Foodmobile distributions can be found by visiting the Foodbank’s website at www.eifoodbank.org and clicking “find help.”

Maximum monthly income per eligible household:

  • Household Size: 1 - $1,872
  • 2 - $2,538
  • 3 - $3,204
  • 4 - $3,870
  • 5 - $4,536
  • 6 - $5,202
  • 7 - $5,868
  • 8 - $6,534
  • (for each additional household member over 8, add $666):

Eastern Illinois Foodbank works to alleviate hunger in Eastern Illinois through cooperation with a network of food pantries, agencies and other programs like the Foodmobile Program. The Foodbank distributes donated and discounted food throughout an 18-county service area in cooperation with more than 160 member agencies and programs. Through these agencies, the Foodbank provides food to over 120,000 different men, women and children each year. 

For more information, contact Ashlee Salinetro, Eastern Illinois Foodbank, 217-328-3663

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