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A Way To Feel Blessed At Tax Time

Kentucky News Service

Charitable organizations, including those which feed the hungry, want you to check off boxes on line 33 of your state income tax return. The nine check-offs are ways Kentucky taxpayers can donate directly to causes that help children, veterans, rape victims and cancer research, among others.

For example, if you send some of your tax refund to the Farms to Food Banks Trust Fund, the donation will help the state's network of food banks purchase surplus produce.

Gary Miles is the executive director of Feeding America, Kentucky's Heartland, which distributes produce to 42 counties.

"One in six Kentuckians are food insecure or they're not always sure where their next meal is going to come from," he said. "So, we all want to find a good, easy way to be able to help the less fortunate out. This is the perfect way."

Grants from the Farms to Food Banks Trust Fund allowed the Kentucky Association of Food Banks to distribute more than 2.5 million pounds of Kentucky produce last year, enough for more than four-million meals. Nearly $29,000 of that money came from tax refunds.

Miles says the beauty of the program is that it helps clients of the network of 800 feeding programs to obtain good quality produce from Kentucky farms, something the hungry often can't afford to buy at the grocery store.

"Squash, green beans, watermelons, potatoes, you name it, we get it," he continued. "They're elated when they get this produce to round out the nutritional value of the meals that they get."