A friendly wager between Governor Jay Nixon and Oklahoma Governor Mary Fallin paid off for the Food Bank for Central and Northeast Missouri.
The Governor presented the food bank with his winnings after the Mizzou Football Tigers defeated the Oklahoma State Cowboys in the Cotton Bowl.Governor Nixon hopes his bet with Governor Fallin encourages more people to donate to local food banks and pantries. He gave Columbiaâ??s food bank a smoked turkey and ham from Californiaâ??s Burgerâ??s Smokehouse. That's in addition to his winnings from Oklahoma.
Governor Nixon said, â??We figured especially since Governor Fallen wagered 50 pounds of Oklahoma meat to be given to this food bank, we needed to surely balance that with outstanding food from Missouri.â??
This past year, the food bank distributed more than 38 million pounds of food that helped feed 114,000 people every month.
Food bank executive director Peggy Kirkpatrick said, â??The need for food assistance keeps going up. We are seeing more people who are working poor that are coming into the pantries now.â??The MU Athletic Department is responsible for even more good news for the food bank. Their Score for Hunger program led by Coach Gary Pinkel exceeded this past yearâ??s goal. Last yearâ??s goal during the football season was $750,000. They raised more than $879,000.
MU Athletic Director Mike Alden said, â??Maybe one of these days, we are going to go from $870,000 and say we donâ??t need that much money because we donâ??t have to feed that many hungry people out there. Thatâ??s the vision and thatâ??s the prayers that all of us have as we continue to go forward.â??
Food bank officials are still waiting for their Oklahoma food to arrive.
Governor Fallin said she appreciates Governor Nixon as they continue to raise awareness about hunger in both states.