" We are doers and dreamers, goal-setters and got-your-backers."
—Blue Cross Blue Shield of Wyoming
Wyoming Together is not just an insurance company's catchy slogan. When BCBSWY claims they're committed to the well-being of everyone in Wyoming, they mean it—Wyoming Hunger Initiative has always invited individuals and organizations to fight food insecurity with their time, their resources, and their innovative thinking; BCBSWY has delivered in big ways on all three counts. For that we are so grateful.
In case you missed it, Wyoming Hunger Initiative teamed up with BCBSWY, University of Wyoming, and Ridley's Family Markets in August to hold the second annual Tackle Hunger campaign! While the campaign culminated in a game day food drive at the 2022 football home opener vs. University of Tulsa, a huge amount of effort to collect nonperishable food items at all BCBSWY Member Centers and at Ridley's locations across the state kicked things off.
Ridley's Family Markets jumped at the invitation to get more involved with this year's food drive—they pre-packaged hundreds of bags of food that patrons could buy for $5 a bag to donate. These bags were heavy and generous! Six cans of food, rice, packaged mac and cheese, and more were available and Wyoming communities showed up to purchase them around the state and also on game day
The team at Laramie Interfaith led by Executive Director Josh Watanabe managed the donations on game day, loading a whole bunch of Ridley's bags to distribute to local food pantries. Between First Lady Jennie Gordon and Governor Mark Gordon, some of the Ridley's Family Markets team, and BCBSWY CEO Diane Gore and employee and Tackle Hunger coordinator Maria Klein, there's a whole lot of passion for Wyoming wellness pictured here.
The Wyoming Hunger Initiative Board of Directors works year-round to fight food insecurity and there's a lot of passion pictured here, too.
It was great to see so many family members raising awareness and tackling hunger!
As game sponsor, BCBSWY's President and CEO Diane Gore was presented with a Wyoming football jersey—and First Lady Jennie Gordon was presented with a commemorative football. When is a football not just a football? When it represents Wyoming Together.
Enough food was collected to provide 15,000 meals for Wyoming children, families, seniors, and veterans in need. While every little bit counts, it feels like a good place to point out that this year's total is more than triple of last year's donations, and exceeded our goal by 5,000 meals.
That is Wyoming Together.
Icing on the cake: final score, 40-37 in double OT, Wyoming.