Scottsdale’s WaFd Bank Arizona donated $20,000 to Extended Hands Food Bank through its WaFd Foundation granting arm. The WaFd Foundation’s purpose is to facilitate direct giving to community-based nonprofits serving low- and moderate-income individuals’ needs.
During the last year, the local team gave more than $160,000 in local grants through the foundation and $2 million across its eight-state footprint.
“Banks—and bank leaders—are in a unique position in times of crisis. Many times, a crisis can or will have a financial impact,” says Mike Brown, WaFd Bank Arizona president. “WaFd Bank, by virtue of our strong capitalization and market strength, is uniquely positioned to help our clients and our communities in this time of uncertainty.”
Extended Hands Food Bank was founded in Fountain Hills in 2004 when Pastor David Iverson found out that the local Fountain Hills food bank was going to close. Since 2004, the demand for the food bank has continued to increase more and more. According to Extended Hands, Arizona’s hunger rates are higher than national averages:
• 17.8% of Arizonans are food insecure, compared to 15.9% nationally.
• 28.2% of Arizonan children face hunger, compared to 21.6% nationally.
“No one ever wants to be put in the position of choosing to pay the mortgage or put food on the table, but that is what commonly happens. Right now, people need to come together to help each other,” says WaFd Bank Fountain Hills Branch Manager Marianne Pinter, whose team has volunteered for the food bank for many years. “When we met with Pastor Iverson and heard about their great need, we were motivated to action in every way we could.”