ST. LOUIS, Oct. 25, 2016 /PRNewswire/ -- The Enterprise Rent-A-Car Foundation today announces one of the largest donations aimed at fighting hunger. The program – called Fill Your Tank – celebrates the company's 60th anniversary by providing $60 million to address food insecurity around the globe.
"Enterprise Rent-A-Car is woven into the fabric of the thousands of towns and neighborhoods where we do business, and food insecurity is an issue in all of those communities. Many times, hunger is invisible to us. We often don't see the signs that someone might be food-insecure or think about the ripple effects of hunger," said Enterprise Rent-A-Car Foundation Vice President and Executive Director Carolyn Kindle Betz.
"Our employees have long supported food banks and pantries in the cities and neighborhoods we serve. The Fill Your Tank program is a natural extension of the good work our employees are already doing. It's also particularly poignant as addressing hunger was one of the last wishes of my grandfather and our founder, Jack Taylor, who passed away earlier this year," added Kindle Betz.
Over the next six years, $10 million will be distributed annually as follows:
$2.5 million to Feeding America®, the largest U.S. domestic hunger-relief and food rescue charity. These funds will help fight hunger among seniors and children.
$1.5 million to Food Banks Canada to support operations and infrastructure in food banks across Canada.
$1 million to The Global FoodBanking Network to expand the work of food banks around the world, especially food banks in the U.K., Ireland, France, Germany and Spain on behalf of company-owned operations in these countries.
$5 million to local food banks and pantries in communities served by Enterprise.
Checks will begin arriving at more than 365 local food banks and food pantries across North America in the next week. These specific donations are determined by local Enterprise operations. Beyond donations, the brand is supporting the initiative with a hunger awareness campaign and through local engagement. Specifically, the awareness campaign will feature stories of what is possible when people are running on a "full tank" – that is, when they have enough to eat. The stories will be featured on Enterprise social media channels, enterprise.com/FillYourTank as well as on partner social media channels.
Globally, one in nine people don't get enough food to be healthy and lead an active life, according to the World Food Programme. In the United States, seniors are the fastest growing food-insecure population. One in 11 seniors is at risk of hunger, often finding themselves choosing between food and other basic needs. But children are at even greater risk. According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, one in six American children is food insecure. Today, more than a third of households served by Feeding America include at least one child.
"An investment of this size in hunger-relief charities in the US, Canada, and around the world is unprecedented," said Feeding America CEO Diana Aviv. "The Enterprise Rent-A-Car Foundation's donation is monumental for Feeding America and the 46 million people we serve. This gift will not only help us fight hunger where it exists today, but also will help build programs to better prepare to serve growing food-insecure populations."
The founder of Enterprise, Jack Taylor, established the company in 1957 with a fleet of seven cars. Today, Enterprise operates in more than 85 countries and territories and is the largest car rental company in the world, based on revenue, fleet size and number of locations. Taylor started the Foundation in 1982 as a way to give back to the communities that drove Enterprise's growth and success. Since then, the Foundation and the Taylor family have contributed more than $1 billion to thousands of local non-profits, with a special focus on community improvement, education and environmental stewardship. Meanwhile, each year Enterprise employees contribute their time and skills to thousands of national and local organizations in the cities and neighborhoods they serve.
A decade ago, Enterprise Rent-A-Car Foundation marked the company's 50th anniversary with the 50 Million Tree Pledge – a commitment to plant a million trees each year on public lands.
"It's in that same spirit that we're launching the Fill Your Tank initiative," said Kindle Betz. "It's a way to honor our company's past while looking forward to the future, and a way to thank Enterprise's customers and neighbors for their support by making a long-term impact on a critical issue."