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INDIANAPOLIS — Thanks to your generosity, our Pack the Pantries holiday donation drive raised nearly $100,000 to fight hunger in central Indiana.

Gleaners Food Bank of Indiana and Midwest Food Bank Indiana received combined donations of $96,899 in a little more than 24 hours, starting Monday at 6 p.m. and continuing through Giving Tuesday.

Pack the Pantries is a FOX59 tradition — a major, single-day push in times of need to boost donations to food banks. Sister station CBS4 joined the effort starting last year to further help us fight hunger.

A $1 donation covers the cost of five meals, so the money raised Tuesday provides close to half a million meals for families in need. The money stays in central Indiana; Gleaners and Midwest purchase food in bulk at wholesale prices, then distribute it to local food pantries.

The food pantry line at Gleaners in Indianapolis on Nov. 30, 2021

The total raised included donations of $6,000 from Financial Center Credit Union and $1,590 from Indy Fuel, both sponsors of Pack the Pantries.

Nexstar Media, the parent company of FOX59 and CBS4, made a $10,000 donation.

Hunger has long been a significant issue in central Indiana, but the pandemic drastically increased demand for food.

Around one in five central Indiana families struggle with hunger or food hardship. In Marion County alone, 22% of people rely on some sort of food assistance.

If you’d still like to help the food banks directly, it’s not too late.

You can donate at the following websites:

Or you can text a gift to:

  • Midwest: text @MFBINDY to 52014
  • Gleaners: text GIVE to 317-593-2400