Feature Story

Million-dollar 'lifeline': Boeing helps tackle childhood hunger

Ray Conner, Commercial Airplanes president and CEO, announces a donation to Food Lifeline during Seahawks practice.

(From left) Steve Raible, Seahawks radio announcer, poses with Boys & Girls clubs member Johnny Tran, Ray Conner, president and CEO of Boeing Commercial Airplanes and Linda Nageotte, president and CEO of Food Lifeline

Jessica Oyanagi/Boeing

(From left) Steve Raible, Seahawks radio announcer, poses with Boys & Girls clubs member Johnny Tran, Ray Conner, president and CEO of Boeing Commercial Airplanes and Linda Nageotte, president and CEO of Food Lifeline. Conner announced a million-dollar donation to help Food Lifeline fight childhood hunger.

It was a special day of pre-season training at the Seattle Seahawks practice facility in Renton, Wash. Among the fans watching the Super Bowl champions run drills were dozens of wide-eyed children from the Boys and Girls Clubs.

“This is so much fun,” said 10-year-old Johnny Tran, a Boys & Girls Clubs member. “I can’t believe we’re so close to the players.”

Tran and more than 60 other children attended the practice courtesy of a partnership between The Boeing Company and the Seahawks organization. It was a day for the children to meet players and take part in a football fitness clinic. The focus was to inspire them to be healthy in the activities they do and with the food they eat. At the event, Boeing gave a big boost to that effort, announcing a $1 million donation to Food Lifeline, an organization that aims to stop hunger by redirecting “good food from manufacturers, farmers, grocery stores and restaurants that might otherwise go to waste,” according to their website.

“We have the opportunity now to feed kids in communities all across western Washington - in all of the places that Boeing employees work and live,” said Linda Nageotte, president and CEO of Food Lifeline.

The donation from Boeing will help expand Food Lifeline’s Kids Cafe meals program in Washington state, which partners with Boys & Girls Clubs and other organizations to bring healthy food to after school and summer meal programs in high-need communities. The funding will allow Food Lifeline to scale the Kid’s Cafe program from serving 200 children to more than 1,000 kids over five years.

“This program is essential for kids and for their families because it provides them with the right kind of nourishment that they need to carry on and lead a healthy life,” said Ray Conner, president and CEO of Commercial Airplanes. “It sets them up for the future. The Boeing Company is committed to supporting that.”

Members of the Bellevue Boys & Girls Clubs met Super Bowl MVP, linebacker Malcolm Smith

John Flick/Boeing

Members of the Bellevue Boys & Girls Clubs met Super Bowl MVP, linebacker Malcolm Smith.