Fill the Backpack program benefits students in WNY

BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) – News 4 is helping the Food Bank of Western New York kick off this year’s Fill the Backpack Program.

DETAILS | Learn more about the program here

Stop at your local Wegmans between now and June 28th and donate non-perishable foods. The Food Bank of Western New York will then distribute the foods in take-home bags each Friday to students in need. Each bag is filled with cereal, shelf-stable milk, fruit juice, soups, fresh fruit and whole grain snacks. They are hoping to receive 50,000 pounds of food, to fill more than 12,000 backpacks.

The Fill the Backpack program is now in 16 schools across Erie, Niagara, Chautauqua and Cattaraugus Counties, and that number is expected to grow. For every one of the schools that participate in the program, there is another school on a waiting list to get into the program. The need right now is greater than ever.

In the last year, they have seen a 15 percent rise in the number of people who come to the Food Bank for help, 43,000 of those people are children. There isn’t a problem we’re only seeing here in Buffalo, but the need across western New York is tremendous.

New numbers from the US Census Bureau show Buffalo has the fourth highest poverty rate in the entire country, behind only Detroit, Cleveland and Rochester.

You can visit the Food Bank of Western New York’s website by following this link. provides commenting to allow for constructive discussion on the stories we cover. In order to comment here, you acknowledge you have read and agreed to our Terms of Service. Commenters who violate these terms, including use of vulgar language or racial slurs, will be banned. Please be respectful of the opinions of others. If you see an inappropriate comment, please flag it for our moderators to review. Note: Comments containing links are not allowed.

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