Connect with us

Hi, what are you looking for?

United States

Fraud Investigation in Food Aid Puts Focus on Role of Nonprofits

Minnesota first approved Feeding Our Future as a sponsor in 2018. In its first years, the group oversaw only a few feeding sites — and, at times, seemed to struggle with overseeing itself.

In February 2020, for instance, the I.R.S. revoked the group’s nonprofit status after it failed to file an annual report for three years. (Feeding Our Future says that status was later reinstated, but the I.R.S. still lists it as revoked.)

In other filings, Feeding Our Future said it had a three-member board to provide outside oversight of its finances. But the man listed as the board’s president from 2018 to 2020, Ben Stayberg, a bartender and electrician, said he had been tricked into taking the job and had “absolutely nothing” to do with overseeing the organization.

“I had a friend, she was like, ‘Will you just sign, put your name on there?’” he said in an interview. “I was like, ‘All right.’” Mr. Stayberg declined to give the friend’s name.

When the pandemic hit, Feeding Our Future’s world changed.

School was out. Children were hungry. Starting in 2020, Congress poured money into the feeding programs and allowed the Agriculture Department to waive rules that had been put in place after previous scandals to make sure states watched the watchdogs. For instance, state officials no longer had to visit feeding sites in person to see whether they were doing what the paperwork said.

After that, Feeding Our Future began to grow rapidly, adding dozens of new sites to its network. Some of them were start-up nonprofits that had sprung up during the pandemic and never served food before.

From 2019 to 2021, the number of children in Feeding Our Future’s network increased to about 400,000, from about 4,000, according to state records. The revenue flowing through its network increased to $197 million from $3.5 million.

Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

You May Also Like


ROME — Pope Francis has sent a message to Italians considering voting for anti-immigration parties, with a homily warning against “raising walls against our...


Roughly 15 months after the Department of Justice filed a lawsuit against the state of Georgia over an election integrity law it deemed to...


Olaf Scholz culminated a two-day trip to the Persian Gulf region by signing a gas deal with the United Arab Emirates (UAE) on Sunday,...


Press play to listen to this article SKANÖR, Sweden — On January 4, 2017, a day of clear skies and light winds on Sweden’s...


German Finance Minister Christian Lindner has questioned if efforts to help the country’s energy companies tackle soaring energy costs would lead to lower energy prices...


Former Vice President Mike Pence will head back to Iowa this week, where he’ll be the featured speaker at a prominent Republican family’s annual...


The type of messaging used by political candidates and political parties — whether it’s considered honest or deceitful — is often telling of what’s...


Attendees of a music festival in New York City Saturday night appeared to boo House Speaker Nancy Pelosi after she made a surprise appearance...