Fifth annual PB&J drive benefits McDonough, Riverdale pantries

Bank of North Georgia and Bank of Coweta, two divisions of Synovus Bank, have announced their hosting of the Fifth Annual “Spread the Love” Peanut Butter and Jelly Food Drive to benefit 36 local food pantries in the communities they serve.

The pantries were selected based on their proximity to the local Bank of North Georgia and Bank of Coweta branches including offices in McDonough, Stockbridge, Covington, Conyers, and Riverdale. The beneficiaries include: Helping in His Name Ministries, Inc., in Stockbridge; Community Food Pantry in Covington; Hearts to Nourish Hope, Inc., in Riverdale; Rockdale Emergency Relief in Conyers; and the Salvation Army in Covington.

This year’s food drive — which began on Monday, which is “National Peanut Butter and Jelly Day” — continues through April 30. Residents can donate peanut butter and jelly at local branches during their normal banking hours.

“Our team members are passionate about making a difference in the local communities we serve,” Don Howard, Regional CEO of Synovus in the Atlanta market said in a statement. “The challenging economy has caused more and more families to reach out to local food banks for assistance and we felt compelled to take action. Our team has a genuine soft spot for kids and we want to be sure they have the nutritious food they need to get through the day energized and excited to learn.”  

Bank of North Georgia and Bank of Coweta have collected more than 10 tons of peanut butter and jelly since 2008, according to bank officials. In 2011, they partnered with 17 local schools and collected 5,899 jars at 7,997 pounds, which amounts to about four tons of peanut butter and jelly.

“We are excited that 23 schools have agreed to partner with our local branches to host a food drive at their school in April 2012,” Howard stated.

Howard said the Kiwanis Club in Covington is joining the effort, along with Porterdale Elementary School in Covington, which is a “2012 PB&J Partner School.”

“We would love to see both creamy and crunchy varieties of peanut butter and every imaginable flavor of jelly to appeal to every child in metro Atlanta,” added Howard. “The impact will be tremendous.”

For more about the locations and branch hours, visit www.bankofnorthgeorgia.com, or www.bankofcoweta.com.