2016 key - Housing

LifeHouse, a Fremont homeless shelter, will receive 1,000 pounds of Skippy peanut butter from Hy-Vee and Hormel Foods as part of Hormel's "Spread the Smiles" campaign.

Hy-Vee and Hormel Foods will donate 1,000 pounds of Skippy peanut butter to LifeHouse, a homeless shelter in Fremont.

Representatives from Hy-Vee and LifeHouse will meet Tuesday morning at the shelter for the donation shipment’s drop-off, which arrived in Fremont on Monday.

The donation is part of Hormel’s campaign “Spread the Smiles,” which will donate 11,000 pounds of Skippy to 11 different communities in eight states. Hormel is the producer and owner of Skippy.

The campaign is a part of a mutual partnership between Hy-Vee and Hormel, which have also held a ham program in the wintertime, said Josh Fisher, communications manager for Hy-Vee.

Fisher said the hunger program started last year with a single large donation.

“This year, they wanted to try to spread it out to a lot more of communities,” he said. “With us knowing some of the troubles that Fremont has experienced with the flooding and just some unfortunate natural events that have taken place, we wanted to make sure we were trying to give back to some of those communities that need help.”

The peanut butter that will be provided to LifeHouse is enough to make 16,300 peanut butter sandwiches, according to a press release.

“I think part of it was its protein, and it’s a got a fairly big shelf life,” Fisher said. “So those were two big factors for choosing peanut butter.”

Other communities will receive a 1,000-pound donation on Tuesday as well, including Norfolk; Yankton, South Dakota; and Quincy, Illinois.

Fisher said the program focused on helping cities that were in need of assistance after disasters, including flooding and tornadoes.

“When you try to spread the wealth as much as you can, it can go pretty quickly,” he said. “It’s hard when you’ve got over 250 stores and you’re trying to get to everybody.”

Fisher said he was glad that Hy-Vee got to take part in a program that made such a huge difference.

“Any time you get an opportunity to help people who are in need and see the immediate gratification, it just reaffirms with you that everything that you’ve done is the right thing to get that help to those people,” he said.

Part of Hy-Vee’s mission is to treat its customers like family, Fisher said.

“If we have an opportunity to put out a helping hand, then we do so,” he said. “We’re not just a helpful smile in every aisle, we’re a helpful smile beyond the aisle as well.”

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