Des Moines Area Hy-Vee Stores Donate Over $42,000 to DMARC Food Pantry Network

On Friday, September 9, 2019, Des Moines area Hy-Vee store directors stopped by DMARC's warehouse to present a donation of $42,940.28 to the DMARC Food Pantry Network. The stores participated in a companywide campaign earlier this year called "Feed the Need" to help replenish local food banks and pantries across Hy-Vee's eight-state region. Hy-Vee organized the effort when it became aware of the ongoing demand for products and supplies at food banks and pantries throughout the year, especially during non-holiday times of the year. Customers participated by simply ...

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Global Atlantic Financial Group Makes Big Impact Through Virtual Drive

Global Atlantic Financial Group check presentation
Earlier this month, Global Atlantic Financial Group hosted a virtual drive for DMARC focused on raising funds to purchase diapers, wipes, infant formula, baby food, and period supplies. The drive was spearheaded by Global Atlantic Financial Group's Women's Network. One of the objectives of the Women's Network is to sponsor community outreach activities. “Most state and federal safety-net program benefits cannot be used to purchase period supplies, leaving 1 in 4 menstruating people struggling to meet this basic need due to lack of income and 1 in 5 missing work or ...

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DMARC Summer Interns Gain Skills and Give Back

This article first appeared in the Aug/Sep/Oct 2019 issue of The Voice. Over the past few years, DMARC has enjoyed the privilege of hosting high school interns to assist our warehouse team with daily operations while developing life and job skills. This summer we welcomed students from the Animal Sciences and Horticulture program at Des Moines Public Schools’ Central Campus and the Summer Youth Experience Program (SYEP) through the Evelyn K. Davis Center, two programs focused on matching youth with workforce training that helps meet their educational and profess...

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DMARC Statement on “Public Charge” Final Rule

The Des Moines Area Religious Council (DMARC) strongly opposes the Department of Homeland Security (DHS)’s final rule, “Inadmissibility on Public Charge Grounds.” We believe the “public charge” rule will negatively impact the health and nutrition of children and families in Iowa and throughout the nation. Last year, DMARC submitted a public comment opposing the proposed “public charge” rule, and encouraged our supporters to do the same. Over 266,000 public comments were received by DHS, the majority of them in opposition to the “public charge” rule. ...

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DMARC Statement on Proposed USDA Rule Change to Broad-based Categorical Eligibility

The Des Moines Area Religious Council (DMARC) strongly opposes the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA)’s proposed rule change that would significantly roll back broad-based categorical eligibility (BBCE) for the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP). Iowa is one of 42 states and jurisdictions that utilizes broad-based categorical eligibility to effectively increase the threshold for SNAP benefits up from the federal income limit of 130% of the federal poverty level (FPL). Thanks to broad-based categorical eligibility, the gross income limit for ...

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DMARC Food Pantry Network Assists 20,000+ in July

The DMARC Food Pantry Network assisted 20,156 individuals in the month of July 2019, an increase of 13.8% compared to July of last year. This past July was the third highest overall month of pantry use in the DMARC Food Pantry Network's 43-year history, behind November 2017 (21,108 individuals) and November 2018 (20,880 individuals). July also had the distinction of being the first month that was not a November where DMARC assisted over 20,000 individuals. While there are a number of factors that may have impacted the amount of food pantry use we saw in July (conti...

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Three Questions to Ask Candidates Running for Office

As Iowans, we have some unique opportunities to engage and interact with candidates running for a number of elected offices, including presidential candidates visiting the state ahead of the Iowa caucuses in February 2020. DMARC has prepared a list below of three questions that you can ask candidates running for office. The following questions are framed toward those running for a federal office, but can be slightly changed depending on who you are asking the question of (ex. "What is your plan to eliminate poverty in the state of Iowa?"). Will you commit to protec...

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DMARC Awarded Prairie Meadows Community Betterment Grant

The Des Moines Area Religious Council (DMARC) Food Pantry Network recently received a Prairie Meadows Community Betterment Grant of $10,000. The grant will allow DMARC to provide the equivalent of 20,000 nutritious meals for central Iowans living with food insecurity. The grant will ensure that pantry visitors have access to fruits, vegetables, frozen meats, low-fat, low-sodium, low-sugar and other healthy foods. DMARC thanks Prairie Meadows for their continued partnership in the fight against food insecurity in Greater Des Moines.

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DMARC Names Matt Unger as CEO

The Des Moines Area Religious Council (DMARC) Board of Directors has named Matt Unger as the new CEO of DMARC. Matt Unger recently completed a 6+ year stretch at the Food Bank of Iowa. Starting as Program Manager and finishing as Chief Operating Officer, Unger led the Food Bank of Iowa to record distribution. His leadership at Food Bank of Iowa also included the implementation of three new programs, a merger with the Food Bank of Southern Iowa, and oversight of the Food Bank’s warehouse remodel. Prior to joining the nonprofit sector, Unger spent more than a dozen ...

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Life Happens

Life happens. You've probably heard that phrase a thousand times. But for many who are assisted by DMARC's Food Pantry Network, it can mean so much more. Meet "Maria" and "Lisa." Maria is Lisa's aunt. She's also a disabled veteran who is Lisa's sole guardian. Both Lisa and Maria have lived in Des Moines for most of their lives. Lisa is now a young teenager. Unfortunately, both of her parents have passed away. She has also lost vision in one eye, with the other eye losing sight as well. Today, Maria serves as Lisa's primary caregiver. Until a year ago she also served ...

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