Arvest Bank announced on June 17 that with the help of customers and community members, it has exceeded its Million Meals goal by raising a record total of 2.4 million meals in the fight against hunger. This is the second consecutive year for a record total of meals raised, according to an Arvest news release.

This year’s campaign total of 2,468,873 meals was made possible through donations from the bank, Arvest associates, customers and community members through fundraisers, events and nonperishable food drives in all Arvest branches throughout April and May. With summer here, the success of the campaign is especially meaningful because many schoolchildren will be without the meals they ordinarily receive at school, Arvest states in the release.

“We are humbled, year after year, by the success of our Million Meals campaigns. We could not fight hunger on this scale without the hard work, dedication and generosity of our associates, customers and community members,” Roger Holroyd, Arvest Bank president in the Fort Smith and River Valley, said in the release. “Thanks to all of those groups, many of our neighbors in need will receive help.”

In the Fort Smith market, which includes branches in Fort Smith, Van Buren, Alma, and Greenwood in Arkansas and Sallisaw and Poteau in Oklahoma, Arvest partnered with Community Services Clearinghouse, United Way of Fort Smith and River Valley Regional Food Bank for the campaign. These organizations received the local donations, and this year, 300,000 total meals were provided in the Fort Smith and River Valley Region. All money and food items raised through this campaign directly benefited 70-plus organizations feeding local communities in Arkansas, Kansas, Missouri and Oklahoma, according to the release.

Launched in 2011, Arvest’s Million Meals campaigns have raised a nine-year total of 16,068,971 meals, which includes more than $2.8 million in funds given directly to the bank’s dozens of local food partners.

The bank recently won a Silver Anvil Award for its 2018 1 Million Meals Campaign and was recognized at a ceremony at the Edison Ballroom in New York. Arvest won in the category of Most Effective Corporate Social Responsibility Campaign for its 2018 1 Million Meals campaign. The 2018 campaign raised more than 2.1 million meals.