In 2021, Sandia Area Federal Credit Union teamed up with Storehouse on two FACE the Hunger Challenges. FACE stands for “Feeding Area Children Everyday”. The goal was to raise funds and awareness about the ongoing need to fight hunger in our community. Generous gifts came in from Sandia Area members. Other local businesses and members of the public gave, too. With matching funds from Sandia Area, the efforts far exceeded expectations. FACE the Hunger campaigns were held in the spring and again during the holiday season of 2021, Together, they raised enough to provide more than one million meals.

Storehouse and Sandia Area teams hold up balloons for 1,000,000 meals and thank you signs



The Storehouse team and our board members gathered in late January to say “Thanks a Million” to Sandia Area for their efforts.

Why a Million Meals Matter

Hunger is an ongoing struggle in New Mexico. During the pandemic, one in three local children is going hungry. Our state is also among the worst for adult hunger. The Storehouse is among the largest food pantries in New Mexico. We support, on average, over 42,000 people a year.

The Storehouse relies on donations. The pantry has to raise money every month to continue to feed local families. Thankfully, it is an efficient operation. Our audits show that 97% of donations go directly to providing food. Thanks to this very low overhead, the Storehouse can provide five meals with every dollar donated. Hundreds of people per week come to the pantry. Local families have come to count on the Storehouse for food when they can’t make ends meet. The pantry supports people from infants to seniors, and lots of working adult.

Sandia Area is an Ongoing Donor

Sandia Area has been a long-time partner of the Storehouse. They have been giving to the food pantry for over a decade. In 2020, Sandia Area members and employees donated enough to provide over 93,000 meals. The FACE the Hunger challenge campaigns had even greater results, bringing in enough to provide over 1 million meals. On January 31, 2022, leaders from Sandia Area visited the food pantry for a “Thanks a Million” gathering in appreciation for their efforts.

The FACE the Hunger campaigns started as part of the credit union’s 65th year. Hoping to make a significant difference, they partnered with the Storehouse to raise awareness around the fact that local children go hungry every day in New Mexico. The campaign asked for financial gifts of all kinds, but pushed for donors who were willing to make regular gifts to feed local children and families. Donors who gave recurring gifts were given re-usable, insulated grocery totes from Sandia Area. As a result, the Storehouse saw an increase in those ongoing gifts.

The Storehouse ops manager and a leader from Sandia Area Federal Credit union hold signs says One Million Meals.



Operations folks share their appreciation. Kevin (left) is the ops manager for the Storehouse and Michelle leads the operations of Sandia Area branches.

In addition, they understood that organizations like the Storehouse need the support of local businesses and individuals to feed people in need. Paula Peknik, President and CEO of Sandia Area Federal Credit Union, said “Sandia Area truly cares about the communities in which we have worked the last 65 years, and we are very happy to reach the level of participation we did from our members and the public, and to match so many of those gifts to make a difference at the Storehouse.”

Thanks a Million Sandia Area!

There were lots of ways to support FACE the Hunger. For example, funds came in through car refinances and Sandia Area members. Three other businesses gave, plus 475 individual donors pitched in. To top it all off, Sandia Area provided matching funds to many of these donations. Together, they made a huge difference.

Storehouse operations manager Kevin Cochran says, “The Storehouse team is amazed with the results of the FACE the Hunger Challenges and the generosity of Sandia Area. These funds will help us provide food for local children and families for many months to come.” Corporate leaders like Sandia Area are appreciated partners to local nonprofits.

Would you and your company like to set up your own fundraising campaign? If so, please reach out to us at call Justin Gomez at (505)449-4463. Together, each of us can make a difference.