Nearly one million people in the Delaware Valley face hunger every day, and this holiday season, Toyota and the Tri-State Toyota Dealers take the wheel to help again, filling a fleet of Toyota Tundras with food donations for Philabundance (the region's largest hunger relief organization).
After donating over 35 tons of food to Philabundance in December 2013, the Tri-State Toyota Dealers and their partners will again provide tens of thousands of meals to people in need this holiday season during their annual “Toyota Tundra Food Drive” on Friday, Dec. 12 in Philadelphia.
“Hunger is a community-wide problem that affects so many of our neighbors, whether you can see it, or not. Support from organizations like Tri-State Toyota Dealers help us fulfill our mission every day and get food into the hands of people who need it most,” said Mark Bender, interim executive director of Philabundance.
For this year’s event, the Tri-State Toyota Dealers and three U.S. divisions of Toyota Motor Corporation North America have partnered with 22 Philadelphia-area organizations to secure and deliver more than 125,000 pounds of nonperishable food for those in need – a 79 percent increase over last year’s event.
“Hunger relief continues to be a serious issue facing many in our community, and with the help of our partners, we are thankful to donate and deliver over 62 tons of food to Philabundance through our 8th annual ‘Toyota Tundra Food Drive’ so that they, in turn, can provide over 125,000 meals to those in need across the Delaware Valley,” said Tri-State TDA President, Paul Muller.
“Toyota is focused on partnering with our dealers on important causes like hunger relief and it is awe-inspiring to see what we are able to do for Philabundance through the ‘Toyota Tundra Food Drive’ with that combined focus and effort,” said Andrew Gilleland, general manager of the Central Atlantic Toyota Region.
Awe-inspiring, indeed, as a convoy of nearly 75 Toyota Tundras will literally “haul away hunger” as the Tri-State Toyota Dealers deliver over 62 tons of donated food to Philabundance in Lot P at Citizens Bank Park.
An essential element to the annual event’s success is the support from the Toyota Dealers’ local broadcast media and professional sports team partners. “Along with Toyota, my fellow Toyota Dealers and I are truly humbled by the generosity of our business partners to help us nearly double the amount of food we were able to donate and deliver to Philabundance this year versus just a year ago,” said Muller.
“The Phillies have a long-standing relationship with the Tri-State Toyota Dealers Association and are excited to once again host and actively participate in the annual Toyota Tundra Food Drive,” said Phillies’ senior vice president of marketing, Dave Buck.
Philabundance and the Tri-State Toyota Dealers welcome credentialed media to attend the 8th Annual “Toyota Tundra Food Drive” in Lot P at Citizens Bank Park on Friday, Dec. 12, between 11:30 a.m. and 1:15 p.m. The Tundra Convoy’s arrival to Lot P is estimated to be around 11:50 a.m.
This year’s food drive event for Philabundance will be a well-supported Toyota affair enabled by the Tri-State Toyota Dealers, Toyota Motor Sales, U.S.A., Toyota Financial Services, and Toyota Material Handling, U.S.A. – the latter of which is once again providing the Toyota forklifts to off-load the food donated to Philabundance.
“It is an honor to contribute to such a worthwhile cause in support of our fellow Toyota divisions and Philabundance in their mission to give aid to those in need this holiday season,” said Dana Hopkins, president, Toyota Material Handling Northeast.
“From pickup trucks to forklifts to tractor-trailers to Toyota associates on the ground, there are several divisions of Toyota supporting our dealers’ efforts for this annual food drive,” said Dave Christ, general manager of the Toyota New York Region. “It is a privilege for all of us at Toyota to bring so many of the company’s resources to bear on supporting our dealers with such an important and impactful cause.”
As a true community partner, Toyota and the Tri-State Toyota Dealers have supported many causes in the Greater Philadelphia Area, including donations and events dedicated to: driver safety, wellness, children’s causes, and local veterans through programs such as “Hiring Our Heroes".
“This annual food drive is just one of many examples where Toyota is working together with our dealers in the Greater Philadelphia area to make a difference in our local communities,” said Gilleland.
Hunger relief is a year-round need, and Toyota hopes that the 2014 Toyota Tundra Food Drive will inspire other organizations and individuals in the community to help Philabundance in any way possible. Visit www.philabundance.org to find out how you or your organization can get involved in hunger relief.