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$50 Grocery Giftcards Available to All Qualifying Students

Originally Published: 4/3/2020

The Kroger Company today announced a donation of $150,000 to the Foundation for the Los Angeles Community Colleges to assist students at all nine Los Angeles Community College District (LACCD) colleges facing food insecurity due to the ongoing COVID- 19 Coronavirus pandemic.

Kroger, Ralphs and Food 4 Less Generously Donates $150,000 to Assist LACCD Students Needing Food During Covid-19 Crisis

Following through on a previous donation of $100,000 last fall that successfully provided groceries to about 2,000 LACCD students, the new philanthropic effort began Monday, March 30, with the Foundation’s plan to mail $50 grocery cards to students for use at local Ralphs and Food4Less grocery stores which are part of the Kroger Company.

“The generosity shown by Food 4 Less and Ralphs in support of our students had been remarkable, even before this pandemic,” LACCD Board of Trustees President Andra Hoffman said. “The fact that they immediately stepped up again, just a few months after helping our students during the holidays, is a testament to their outstanding support of vulnerable communities."

Hoffman added, "Food insecurity faced by our students has been an increasingly serious issue and the situation has only gotten more precarious with this current crisis. The wonderful people at the Food4Less/Ralphs organization have been like fairy godparents, and we are so very grateful."

“The coronavirus outbreak has upended food security in our vulnerable communities,” said Bryan Kaltenbach, President at Kroger’s Food 4 Less Division. “Through all of this we have been uplifted to see local communities working together to support one another like family. LACCD is family and we want to continue doing our part to afford them groceries during this time of need.”

“Ending hunger in our communities through food donations and monetary support of hunger relief organizations is the mainstay of our Zero Hunger Zero Waste social impact plan,” said Tom Schwilke, President at Kroger’s Ralphs Division. “Ralphs is striving to deliver solutions to eliminate food insecurity for LACCD students and we are grateful to partner with the Foundation to achieve this goal.”

LACCD Chancellor Francisco C. Rodriguez said the “COVID-19 emergency has seriously impacted the lives of many of our students and their families. They are worried about making ends meet and having food on the table. We thank Kroger, Food 4 Less and Ralphs for their incredibly generous gift and hope that their visionary and corporate leadership example inspires others who have the capacity to feed needy students and invest in the education of Los Angeles.”

The significant $150,000 donation will be used immediately by the Foundation to distribute $50 gift cards to students at all nine colleges who are facing emergency food issues, according to Michael Fuller, Executive Director for the Foundation. Fuller advised students to apply for the grocery cards through the student portal system at Mycollege.laccd.edu. The Student Help Desk is available to assist students who need password, login or navigation help on the portal. Students can call toll free number at (844) 695-2223, Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 6 p.m.

The colleges include Los Angeles City College, East Los Angeles College, Los Angeles Harbor College, Los Angeles Mission College, Los Angeles Pierce College, Los Angeles Southwest College, Los Angeles Trade-Technical College, Los Angeles Valley College and West Los Angeles College

“Kroger, Ralphs and Food 4 Less are outstanding corporate citizens and we salute them for their generosity to our students and for standing united with us at LACCD in our hour of need,” Fuller said. “Without hesitation, they stepped forward to help.”

While tuition at California’s community college is now free for two years, including at LACCD through its L.A. College Promise Program, the other associated costs of pursuing higher education remains a major barrier to success, including housing, transportation, textbooks, school supplies, and the most basic of needs: food.

Thanks to generous philanthropic support by Kroger, Ralphs and Food4Less, food insecurity barriers are being recognized and addressed.

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