Editors/producers: High-resolution video of this event is available for download at this link
MARICOPA (April 29, 2022) – Jim Shoaf, founder and CEO of Maricopa Pantry, Inc., had no trouble finding words to describe the significance of a $30,000 check from Banner Medical Group and Banner Casa Grande Medical Center to help rebuild the Maricopa Pantry Food Bank.
“It’s the start of the future,” Shoaf said. “It’s going to take a lot to rebuild, and this is really the start.”
On March 28, firefighters were called out to the food pantry to help battle a fire that ended up destroying equipment and storage facilities which contained thousands of pounds of donated food items. Banner Medical Group physicians who live and work in Maricopa at the Banner Health Center decided they needed to help Shoaf’s organization, which has been providing food items to individuals and families in Maricopa and other nearby communities for almost two decades.
“When we learned about this devastation and this fire about a month ago, where 50,000 pounds of food was lost and that 1,500 families a week were dependent on, we looked at that as an incredible loss and a sudden loss for families that depend on this for their sustenance,” said Dr. Shiva Birdi, interim CEO for Banner Medical Group. “Food is medicine for them, and in our role as health care providers to ensure that families are healthy, we want to make sure that they have the food they need on a regular basis.”
On Friday, April 29, Dr. Birdi, Brian Kellar, CEO of Banner Casa Grande, and other Banner Health officials, handed Shoaf a check for $30,000 as a way to continue to provide those healthy meals to those who really need them. Out of those funds, $25,000 comes from physicians and employees at the Banner Health Center in Maricopa, and $5,000 comes from employees at Banner Casa Grande who donate through the annual “Better Together” campaign, which gives team members an opportunity to support vital programs where they work and live.
Shoaf said, “I knew shortly after the fire that we were going to rebuild, and I didn’t know how. And now I do know how, because businesses like Banner, and different organizations from the county, and businesses here in town are stepping up.”
“This is about living up to our mission,” said Dr. Birdi. “We are here to serve the communities wherever Banner Health has facilities, has clinical programs, has physician practices, and we’re here to make sure those communities are at their healthiest.”
For more information on the Maricopa Pantry Food Bank, please visit their website or their Facebook page.
Banner Health is one of the largest, secular nonprofit health care systems in the country. In addition to 30 acute-care hospitals, Banner also has an academic division, Banner – University Medicine, and a partnership with one of the world’s leading cancer programs, Banner MD Anderson Cancer Center. Banner’s array of services includes a health-insurance division, employed physician groups, outpatient surgery centers, urgent care locations, home care and hospice services, retail pharmacies, stand-alone imaging centers, physical therapy and rehabilitation, behavioral health services, a research division and a nursing registry. To make health care easier, 100% of Banner-employed doctors are available for virtual visits, and Banner operates a free 24/7 nurse line for health questions or concerns. Patients may also reserve spots at Banner Urgent Care locations and can book appointments online with many Banner-employed doctors. Headquartered in Arizona, Banner Health also has locations in California, Colorado, Nebraska, Nevada and Wyoming. For more information, visit bannerhealth.com.