Volunteers from Drax and KTVE packed the donated food supplies into bags on June 16 to distribute via the Wellspring, a United Way of Northeast Louisiana partner agency. Mac’s Fresh Market also offered premade bags filled with non-perishable items that people could pay $6 to donate. The donations will be stored at the Wellspring, where homeless veterans can go to collect them year-round.
The National Coalition for Homeless Veterans estimates that on any given night, 200,000 veterans are homeless, and 400,000 veterans will experience homelessness over the course of a year.
Research has also shown that veterans living in poverty are at higher risk of food insecurity, homelessness and other hardships than those who have never served in the forces.
Evalise Poulin, Drax Learning Development Specialist, said:
“I love being part of a company that gives back so much to the communities we operate in, such as our recent opportunity to help homeless veterans through the United Way. Being able to support those who have sacrificed so much for us was very rewarding.”
The food drive coincided with the start of the television network’s new program ‘Salute to Veterans’, also sponsored by Drax, which aims to honor and thank local veterans for their service.
The program will include three-minute interviews with a different veteran each month, saluting them for their service. The interviews will be aired during KTVE’s news broadcast, and available to view on KTVE’s website.
Tammy Esswein, KTVE Account Manager, said:
“Over the past few weeks, 4.8 tons of food was donated, and over the past 4 years KTVE/KARD has done this project, we’ve donated 28 tons of food. On June 16, 2022, with the help and sponsorship from Drax, we were able to bag up this food and donate to the Wellspring. We are so thankful for our amazing community and Drax!”
Drax is committed to supporting the communities local to its operations and is this year drawing up plans for a more targeted community spend.
In 2021, Drax supported education and skills in Louisiana, Mississippi, Arkansas and Alabama and provided donations to help communities hit by natural disasters and Covid and work to support sustainable forestry.
In Louisiana, support included Hurricane Ida relief efforts, sponsoring an environmental education workshop for teachers and launching a Classroom of the Month program
Photo caption: Volunteers from Drax and KTVE packed food supplies into bags donated by local business Mac’s Fresh Markets
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- The Wellspring is a charitable non-profit organization aimed at strengthening and valuing individuals and families through professional services and community leadership with compassion and integrity.
- According to Cohen et al. in “Food Insecurity Among Veterans: Resources to Screen and Intervene,” veterans living in poverty are at even higher risk than nonveterans for food insecurity, homelessness, and other material hardship, and homeless veterans have a 49% higher risk of suffering from food insecurity.
- Through its operations in Louisiana and Mississippi, Drax supports more than 1,200 jobs and contributes $175m to the region’s economy.
- This includes more than 1,200 jobs in Louisiana and Mississippi with 300 direct jobs across these two states in Drax’s three pellet mills and at the port of Greater Baton Rouge.
- Drax’s pellet mills also support the wider supply chain of loggers, truckers, railway workers, port workers and other logistics professionals.
Drax Group’s purpose is to enable a zero carbon, lower cost energy future and in 2019 announced a world-leading ambition to be carbon negative by 2030, using bioenergy with carbon capture and storage (BECCS) technology.
Drax’s around 3,000 employees operate across three principal areas of activity – electricity generation, electricity sales to business customers and compressed wood pellet production and supply to third parties. For more information visit www.drax.com
Drax owns and operates a portfolio of renewable electricity generation assets in England and Scotland. The assets include the UK’s largest power station, based at Selby, North Yorkshire, which supplies five percent of the country’s electricity needs.
Having converted Drax Power Station to use sustainable biomass instead of coal it has become the UK’s biggest renewable power generator and the largest decarbonisation project in Europe. It is also where Drax is piloting the groundbreaking negative emissions technology BECCS within its CCUS (Carbon Capture Utilisation and Storage) Incubation Area.
Its pumped storage, hydro and energy from waste assets in Scotland include Cruachan Power Station – a flexible pumped storage facility within the hollowed-out mountain Ben Cruachan.
The Group also aims to build on its BECCS innovation at Drax Power Station with a target to deliver 4 million tonnes of negative CO2 emissions each year from new-build BECCS outside of the UK by 2030 and is currently developing models for North American and European markets.
Pellet production and supply:
The Group has 17 operational pellet plants and developments with nameplate production capacity of around 5 million tonnes a year.
Drax is targeting 8 million tonnes of production capacity by 2030, which will require the development of over 3 million tonnes of new biomass pellet production capacity. The pellets are produced using materials sourced from sustainably managed working forests and are supplied to third party customers in Europe and Asia for the generation of renewable power.
Drax’s pellet plants supply biomass used at its own power station in North Yorkshire, England to generate flexible, renewable power for the UK’s homes and businesses, and also to customers in Europe and Asia.
Drax supplies renewable electricity to UK businesses, offering a range of energy-related services including energy optimisation, as well as electric vehicle strategy and management.
To find out more go to the website www.energy.drax.com