GAITHERSBURG, Md., Feb. 17, 2017 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Sodexo, world leader in Quality of Life services, hosted executives, members and graduates of Leadership Montgomery for a reception and service event today benefiting Manna Food Center's Smart Sacks program. Held at Sodexo's corporate headquarters for North America in Gaithersburg, Md., the event highlighted expanded programming offered by Leadership Montgomery following its expansion last month to include the Corporate Volunteer Council (CVC) of Montgomery County. Somerset Mayor Jeffrey Slavin and Montgomery County Councilmember Sidney Katz were also in attendance to support the service activity, which benefits students at Washington Grove Elementary School.
The 2016-2017 school year marks the 10th anniversary of Sodexo's support of Manna Food Center's Smart Sacks program, providing supplemental nutrition to students at Washington Grove Elementary School, where 74 percent of free and reduced-price meals. Attendees and other volunteers at today's service event were able to pack enough sacks to provide two weeks of donations.
"In 2005 Sodexo convened a diverse group of stakeholders to pilot Smart Sacks, a nutrition program that bridges the gap between Friday and Monday, for children and their families who might not have another meal until after the weekend," said Shondra Jenkins, executive director, Sodexo Stop Hunger Foundation. "That pilot supported 15 children at Summit Hall Elementary School. Today it serves 2,500 kids each week at 60 elementary schools."
Sodexo was specifically selected as the backdrop for Leadership Montgomery's first service event after joining forces with CVC because of its dedication to improving quality of life in local communities, its commitment to fighting hunger and its corporate culture, where employees are both enthusiastic and empowered to volunteer time and talent. As part of the company's Better Tomorrow 2025 commitments, its Stop Hunger program mobilizes employees, clients, customers, suppliers and youth to join forces and combat hunger. Created in 1996, Stop Hunger is now present in 44 countries.
In remarks delivered at the service event, Leadership Montgomery president and CEO, C. Marie Taylor, announced that, with the assistance of a grant from the Meyer Foundation, a three-part strategy was developed to provide a clear model of community impact. It entails leadership development, leadership engagement and leadership in action. Through newly expanded programming, Leadership Montgomery will offer the same services and programs as delivered previously, along with additional programs that are specific to corporate citizenship and volunteerism through its new CVC component. All of this further enhances its ability to serve new and established leaders in Montgomery County while providing added opportunities for community service and volunteerism in leadership.
"We have a history of supporting nonprofit collaborations, and what makes them successful is a clear, shared sense of a bigger, bolder vision," said Nicky Goren, president and CEO of the Eugene and Agnes E. Meyer Foundation. "That's just one of the things that is so exciting about this collaboration: two organizations that came together from a place of strength to assess the work that they are trying to do in the community, and they acknowledged that their synergy would result in a greater impact."
Sodexo delivers more than 100 services across North America that enhance organizational performance, contribute to local communities and improve quality of life. The Fortune Global 500 company is a leader in delivering sustainable, integrated facilities management and food service operations.
Learn more about Sodexo at its corporate blog, Sodexo Insights.
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