Arvest Bank’s Million Meals initiative challenges bank associates, customers and community members to participate in fundraising efforts and nonperishable food drives to fight hunger in the more than 135 communities the bank serves. The initiative is needed, as Missouri ranks among the 20 most food-insecure states in the nation, according to the United States Department of Agriculture.

Arvest kicked off the two-month, bank-wide effort this week to provide at least one million meals to local, hungry families, and it will continue through June 1. The initiative will conclude later that month, when donations are presented to 70-plus locally selected organizations that feed the hungry in their communities.

Arvest in Aurora has partnered with Harvest Church for the duration of the initiative. All donations received will go to Harvest Church to provide meals to local, hungry families. Aurora residents can participate in Million Meals by dropping off nonperishable food items or making monetary donations at the Arvest branch in Aurora, calling (866) 952-9523 or using the Arvest Go mobile app. Every dollar raised through Million Meals provides the equivalent of five meals for those in need.

“Kicking off our Million Meals campaign is always an exciting time,” said Jordan Cornman, lender for Arvest Bank in Aurora. “Our associates look forward to joining Harvest Church, our customers and the community to fight hunger, and it’s nice to know the donations we raise here will stay local.”

Arvest is conducting its annual initiative in the spring again this year due to the fact food banks report an increased need for food items in the summer, when many children do not have the benefit of eating meals at the schools they attend. According to the Food Research and Action Center, for example, the average daily student participation in the Summer Nutrition Program in Missouri is just 8.8 percent of the average daily student participation in the National School Lunch Program.

Donations to food banks also tend to be lower in the spring and summer than at other times of the year. For more information about Million Meals, visit arvest.com.

About Arvest

Arvest Bank, named by Forbes magazine as one of “America’s Best Large Employers” for 2018, operates more than 270 bank branches in Arkansas, Oklahoma, Missouri and Kansas through a group of 14 locally managed banks, each with its own board and management team. These banks serve customers in more than 135 communities, with extended weekday banking hours at many locations. Arvest also provides a wide range of banking services including loans, deposits, treasury management, credit cards, mortgage loans and mortgage servicing. Arvest is an Equal Housing Lender and Member FDIC.

About Arvest Wealth Management

Arvest Wealth Management offers wealth management, trust services and insurance products. Investments and Insurance Products: Not FDIC Insured, May Lose Value and Not Guaranteed by the Bank. Trust services provided by Arvest Bank.