Liberty Bank, 39 Rotary Clubs, and CFMC Raise Over $740,000 to Provide Thanksgiving Meals and Stock Food Pantries

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Released on behalf of Liberty Bank

In collaboration with 39 local Rotary Clubs and one Lions Club, and the Community Foundation of Middlesex County (CFMC), Liberty Bank Foundation announced today that over $740,000 was raised through its 20th Annual Thanksgiving Drive.

These dollars will help more families in the Bank’s footprint have a generous Thanksgiving meal to enjoy on Thursday. Each year, this drive also helps stock food on pantry shelves across Connecticut in preparation for the winter months.

According to the American Farm Bureau, the average cost of a Thanksgiving meal this year is $6.76 per person. Through this effort, that is over 100,000 meals for area individuals and families in need. The donation to the community incorporates a match of more than $148,000 from Liberty Bank Foundation to support each of the Rotary Clubs for their ongoing partnership to ensure more families have access to warm, nutritious Thanksgiving meals this holiday.

This drive was promoted individually by each Rotary Club and in Liberty Bank branches.

“We continue to see individuals and families in our communities struggle every day to put food on the table, making it harder for them to stay healthy and focus on other essential aspects of life. Once again, working closely with our community partners, we are putting our Be Community Kind brand promise into action to combat food insecurity not only on Thanksgiving but in the months ahead,” said David W. Glidden, President & CEO of Liberty Bank and President of Liberty Bank Foundation.

Beginning in 2004 when the Middletown Rotary Club and Liberty Bank teamed up to expand this fundraiser throughout Liberty’s entire service area, local Rotary Clubs, the Liberty Bank team and their new partner as of last year, CFMC, have raised nearly $7 million.

“At CFMC, we know that partnering is key to getting things done in our communities. We are honored to work with Liberty Bank Foundation and all the Rotarians who participated in this incredible Thanksgiving project,” said Cynthia H. Clegg, President & CEO, Community Foundation of Middlesex County. “We feel fortunate to be surrounded by such caring, dedicated, and generous people and we are truly humbled to play a small part in helping our friends and neighbors enjoy this wonderful holiday.”

The following Clubs are participating in the 2023 Liberty Bank/Rotary Club Thanksgiving Dinner Drive: Ansonia/Seymour/Oxford, Branford, Bristol, Cheshire, Chester, Clinton, Colchester, Deep River, Derby/Shelton, East Hampton, East Hartford, Essex, Groton, Hamden, Kensington/Berlin, Ledyard, Madison, Meriden, Middletown, Montville, Mystic/Stonington, Naugatuck, New Britain, New London, Newington, Niantic, North Branford, North Haven, Norwich, Old Saybrook, Plainville, Simsbury/Granby, Southington, Wallingford, Waterbury, Waterford, West Hartford, Wethersfield/Rocky Hill, Willimantic, and the East Haddam Community Lions Club.

“We are honored to be a recipient of this drive because it helps us to address the most pressing needs of the people who come to us for help,” said Beth Boyle, co-director of House of Bread, a beneficiary of Simsbury-Granby Rotary Club. “Throughout 2023, we’ve seen a steady increase in need across all our programs. We also know that this trend will likely continue as the seasons change and many continue to struggle financially and otherwise. The generous support we receive from the Liberty Bank Rotary Club Thanksgiving Drive makes an immediate and meaningful impact on our guests during the holiday season and beyond!”

About Liberty Bank Foundation

Since its inception in 1997, Liberty Bank Foundation has awarded over $17 million in grants to nonprofit organizations throughout Liberty Bank’s market area.  Following the Bank’s ‘Be Community Kind’ spirit, the Foundation seeks to improve the lives of individuals and families by investing in three key areas:  Education & Training, Affordable Housing, and Food.

About Community Foundation of Middlesex County (CFMC)

Community Foundation of Middlesex County’s mission is to improve the quality of life for the people of the County now and in the future by developing endowments, making grants that have impact, and assisting donors in meeting their philanthropic objectives.

About Rotary: Service Above Self

Rotary is a global network of more than 1.2 million volunteer leaders who dedicate their time and talent to tackle the world’s most pressing humanitarian challenges.  There are 34,000 Rotary clubs in more than 200 countries and geographical areas. Clubs are nonpolitical, nonreligious, and open to all cultures, races, and creeds. Their work impacts lives at both the local and international levels, from helping families in need in their own communities to working toward a polio-free world.  As signified by the motto “Service Above Self,” Rotary’s main objective is service — in the community, in the workplace, and throughout the world.

Photo: In the turkey suit, Scot Haney, weatherman at WFSB Channel 3, joined Patrick Sullivan (middle), the current President of the Simsbury/Granby Rotary Club, and Marianne Bannan (right), the coordinator for the Jack Bannan Turkey trot started by her father, to present a check for the dollars raised by the Club during the 20th annual Liberty Bank Foundation Thanksgiving Drive. The donation was for $23,000 from the Simsbury/Granby Rotary Club and the Liberty Bank Foundation. All food and funds raised are going to Connecticut Foodshare.

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