Today, the recently-formed Elanco Foundation pledged more than $700,000 to help fight rising food insecurity challenges due to the novel coronavirus outbreak. The funds will support organizations and food banks in communities across Elanco Animal Health’s (NYSE: ELAN) footprint, including Gleaners Food Bank of Indiana, the European Food Banks Federation and food banks in Winslow, Maine, Ft. Dodge, Iowa, Clinton, Ind., the Kansas City area, and Greenfield, Ind. communities. The Elanco Foundation will continue to monitor the emerging food security issues arising from the COVID-19 crisis in other regions of the globe.
“In this time of uncertainty, the health and well-being of our employees, customers, animals and the communities where we operate are our top priority,” said Jeff Simmons, Elanco president and CEO. “Such an unprecedented time underscores the critical importance of a safe, affordable food supply, particularly meat, milk and eggs. And the needs are growing. There is no better time than during an urgent philanthropic need to launch our newly created Elanco Foundation to deliver on our promise of health by increasing access to healthy animal protein for all people. We challenge everyone to help us ‘fill the banks.’”
“The COVID-19 outbreak, both globally and in our own backyard, is making food access difficult for many families,” said Kristin Bloink, Board chair of the Elanco Foundation, and vice president, Global Research and External Innovation at Elanco. “Because the Elanco Foundation is dedicated to two causes – food security and human-animal bond – we knew we needed to find a way to help the communities where we work and live during this unprecedented time.”
In Indiana, where Elanco’s global headquarters are located, the company is leading a coalition to raise $1.6M to feed 10,000 families with children in the Indianapolis Public School (IPS) system for the next eight weeks. Eight in 10 IPS kids struggle with food security. Through the efforts of Gleaners Food Bank, buses are delivering emergency food boxes to a variety of IPS locations. The funds from Elanco Foundation will meet food needs for about 2,500 IPS families over the next eight weeks.
“In recent weeks, Gleaners has been asked to step up and serve. Thanks to the generosity of organizations like the Elanco Foundation, we have been able to do so,” shares John Elliott, president and CEO of Gleaners Food Bank of Indiana. “We’ve more than doubled distribution at our onsite pantry. We’re adding mobile pantries in a variety of communities in our service area, and partnering with IPS to ensure that families who need help, receive it. We’re grateful to Elanco for leading this corporate challenge to ensure that no one – and particularly no child – is left hungry due to this pandemic.”
About the Elanco Foundation
Established in 2019 by Elanco Animal Health, the Elanco Foundation amplifies Elanco’s impact by improving the well-being of people and animals around the world. These efforts align with the focus of the new Elanco Foundation, which is committed to philanthropic investments, strategic partnerships and volunteer engagements connected to food security and the human-animal bond. Food security efforts will strive to improve health of people through increased access to animal protein from food systems, sustainable farming, and protein education. Human-animal bond efforts aim to ensure individuals have the animal companionship they need to thrive, including focus on service dogs and animal-assisted interventions.
Elanco’s corporate social responsibility platform, Elanco’s Healthy Purpose™, will work alongside the Elanco Foundation to discover and advance the ways that improving animal health can help address global issues in mental health, physical health and the health of the planet. The Foundation seeks to drive near-term results and sustainable solutions through the power of animals, the promise of health and the potential for change.
To learn more about the Elanco Foundation, visit https://www.elanco.com/healthy-purpose#elanco-foundation.