Project Bread Hosts Successful Walk for Hunger

Rep. Adrian Madaro joined Project Bread Executive Director Ellen Parker on the Boston Common Sunday to help kickoff the 47th Annual Walk for Hunger.

Rep. Adrian Madaro joined Project Bread Executive Director Ellen Parker on the Boston Common Sunday to help kickoff the 47th Annual Walk for Hunger.

State Representative Adrian Madaro helped kick off another successful Walk for Hunger Sunday hosted by Eastie based Project Bread that included a team put together by Santarpio’s Pizza.

The 47th Annual Walk for Hunger drew the Santarpio’s team, which raised over $1,000 for the Walk, and 40,000 other participants and 2000 volunteers.

Project Bread’s Executive Director Ellen Parker said the initial estimates show that Project Bread will surpass its goal of raising $3 million at the 20-mile walk, which started and ended at the Boston Common. This is Project Bread’s largest annual fundraiser. Money raised will support a diverse set of solutions to fighting hunger, including emergency food programs, community-based meal programs in Eastie and early childhood and school nutrition programs.

Before the walk started Rep. Madaro joined Parker on the Boston Common to offer some words of encouragement before the walkers headed out on their 20 mile journey. Madaro also announced how he recently secured funding in the House version of the budget for Project Bread.

“Based in East Boston, Project Bread is the only state-wide anti-hunger organization and the organization is a national leader in changing the conversation about hunger and poverty,” said Madaro. “Far too many people in our community struggle every month.  And many of these people are working families.  For those who earn the minimum  wage, it very hard to meet the cost of food, shelter and other basic needs.”

This past week the House of Representatives debated the budget for 2016. Madaro sponsored an amendment that passed the House which would earmark $120,000 for Massachusetts Farm to School, a project which brings together local farms with schools and institutions that purchase the fresh produce.

“This is a great example of the community-based programs that Project Bread invests in,” said Madaro. “Project Bread is working hard to change this by building programs that will promote sustainable and reliable access to healthy food for everyone. They do this by investing in the community, including community-based meal programs, early childhood and school nutrition programs, supporting emergency food organizations and improving farm-to-table access.”

The Santarpio’s Pizza team has been involved in the Walk for 20 years when sisters, Joia and Carla  Santarpio first walked.

“Carla and I did the walk 20 years ago and have be supporting it ever since,” said Joia Santarpio. “Its important to us to help the people of our local communities.”

The Walk is a community-based event that started as an awareness event and has evolved into the biggest fundraiser of the year to support the work of Project Bread and its funded agencies. Thousands of people today, from all neighborhoods and all walks of life came together Sunday to raise money and to support individuals in the community who are struggling with food insecurity.

The theme of this year’s walk is A Hand Up, Not a Hand Out. Parker said it was an important message because it reinforces the community feel of the walk.

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Rep. Adrian Madaro joined Project Bread Executive Director Ellen Parker on the Boston Common Sunday to help kickoff the 47th Annual Walk for Hunger.

Rep. Adrian Madaro offered some words of encouragement before the walkers, which included a team put together by Santarpio’s Pizza, headed out on their 20 mile journey.

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