Good Deeds: Aetna donates 30 fridges to local food pantries

by Johnathan Reeves
by Johnathan Reeves

6/4/2021 | 7:00 p.m.

CARBONDALE — A local health organization, in collaboration with the Southern Illinois Food Pantry Network, has donated over $138,000 worth of fridges and freezers to local food pantries.

Aetna Better Health of Illinois, the Medicaid managed care business of Aetna, a CVS Health company, donated the fridges and freezers to 30 local pantries.

“Food insecurity leads to poor health outcomes,” said Kim Foltz, CEO, Aetna Better Health of Illinois. “The Southern Illinois Food Pantry Network and its partners provide a critical lifeline to healthy foods for families in hard-to-reach and underserved areas. With 25 percent of residents living in areas designated as food deserts, these pantries provide much needed access to healthy foods.”

According to Southern Illinois Healthcare (SIH), 80 percent of adults in Southern Illinois are not meeting recommended guidelines for daily fruit and vegetable intake.

More than 45,000 Southern Illinoisans rely on their local food pantries to access food. In the past, local food pantries reported having to turn perishable donations away because they do not have the capacity to store these types of food.

Aetna’s donation of 51 refrigerators and freezers enables participating pantries to source more perishable and healthy items to distribute, as opposed to shelf-stable, non-perishable items. 

Thank you, Aetna, for sharing your Good Deed with WFCN News!

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