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The 68 Ventures Bowl is all about giving back to the community of Mobile. One of the ways we do this is by providing service projects for the teams to participate in while they are in town. The bowl teams will each get to partner with our two local food banks on December 20th. The food banks they will be visiting are Feeding the Gulf Coast and Prodisee Pantry.

Feeding the Gulf Coast works through member organizations and special programs to provide nutritious food to meet the challenge of feeding people who are hungry as a result of systemic poverty, personal crisis or disaster. The core values of integrity, stewardship of resources, accountability, service, diversity and inclusion are what guides Feeding the Gulf Coast in their decisions and actions. Feeding the Gulf Coast operates three branches located along the central Gulf Coast with facilities in Gulfport, MS; Theodore, AL; and Milton, FL. Together, these facilities in partnership with over 800 agencies, work to distribute more than 30 million pounds of food annually to the 24-county service area through the food bank’s hunger-relief programs.

During the 2022 bowl week, Rice University had the opportunity to be paired up with Feeding the Gulf Coast as their community project. “It means so much,” said Michael Ledger, President and CEO of Feeding the Gulf Coast. “It’s so fun to see them come in and be so productive and so helpful to those in need so quickly. They are making a huge impact here today.” The team created assembly lines to put together boxes of food and drinks for senior citizens in the area. Not only did they make it fun for themselves, but worked as a team in a way that just meant more.

Prodisee Pantry is a faith-based non-profit community ministry providing emergency food and disaster relief. They have provided assistance to Baldwin County families facing hardship stemming from job loss, medical expenses, natural disasters and other crises. They provide food to single parents, unemployed and under-employed households, families in transition, homeless, retirees and grandparents raising grandchildren. Since 2003, over 185,000 families made up of 450,985 individuals from Baldwin County have received help from Prodisee Pantry.

The University of Southern Mississippi had the pleasure to work with Prodisee Pantry for their 2022 bowl week Community Service Day. “We are super excited to have the Southern Miss football team here packing food boxes,” said Deann Sevros, the Executive Director of Prodisee Pantry. USM made food boxes, consisting of fruits and vegetables, canned goods and dry goods. Southern Miss freshman tight end, Evan McNally was appreciative of the opportunity to give back. “I feel like it’s a great opportunity for us, especially as a football program,” McNally said. “We don’t get to do much as far as service, so I feel like it’s great to come out and help the people that are really in need and give back to the community.”

We are pleased to help provide volunteers for both of these food banks, and are thankful to the football teams for making it exciting.