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Hastings Family Service receives $2,500 from 'Swipe Out Hunger'

Hastings Family Service finished in first in this year's "Swipe Out Hunger." From left to right are: Chris Koop, executive director of Hastings Family Service; Mike Swanson, commercial lender; and Maggie Cichosz, volunteer and communications coordinator. Photo courtesy of Merchants Bank

Merchants Bank's "Swipe Out Hunger" Facebook giveaway has concluded with a donation of $2,500 to Hastings Family Service.

"We are thrilled to have finished first in this year's Swipe Out Hunger contest," said Maggie Cichosz, volunteer and communications coordinator at Hastings Family Service. "$2,500 will make such a difference in the lives of struggling families in the Hastings area. Thank you to Merchants Bank for their generosity and support of local food shelves. We are so grateful to the hundreds of people who voted and shared every day, especially Mike Swanson and Molly Peters who took it upon themselves to organize the community to vote for Hastings Family Service."

Merchants Bank donated 5 cents each time a Merchants Bank credit card or debit card was used Aug. 1-8, for a total of $10,000 donated to 13 food shelves. The top three donations of $2,500, $1,500 and $1,000 were awarded based on the percentage of votes cast for each food shelf on Merchants Bank's Facebook page with the remaining money split between the rest of the food shelves. More than 3,600 votes were cast in this year's giveaway.

The food shelves were nominated by bank locations. There were a number of locations that nominated the same organization. The "Swipe Out Hunger" awards break down as follows:

• Hastings Family Service (Hastings): $2,500

• Friends in Need Food Shelf (Cottage Grove): $1,000

• Feed My People (Eau Claire): $500

• 360 Communities (Lakeville): $500

• Cannon Falls Food Shelf (Cannon Falls): $500

• Channel 1 (Rochester): $ 500

• Hometown Resource Center (St. Charles): $500

• The Hunger Task Force (Onalaska): $1,500

• La Crescent Food Share (La Crescent): $500

• The Open Door Pantry (Apple Valley and Rosemount): $500

• Randolph Food Shelf (Hampton): $500

• SEMCAC (Caledonia, Lanesboro, Rushford and Spring Grove): $500

• Winona Volunteer Services (Winona) $500

During last year's "Swipe Out Hunger" giveaway Hastings Family Service received the top donation and more than 5,800 total votes were cast.

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