Initiatives & Events

May
1
Fri
2020
Summer Hunger Started Early
May 1 – Jul 31 all-day

Every year, we come together to #StopSummerHunger. This is not a normal year. Because of COVID-19, summer hunger started early.

Double my donation!

#StopSummerHungerWhen school is out we know that families struggle to keep food on the table.  Children and teens who are part of free and reduced-cost breakfast and lunch programs often no longer receive those meals.  There are increased expenses for childcare when school is out, and the cost of utilities rise along with temperatures.  Budgets for so many families are already stretched thin, and the stress of covering these additional costs is very real.

The COVID-19 pandemic and the economic crisis means more people than ever are facing hunger each day. Parents and caregivers have lost their jobs and healthcare. Schools have been closed, and in many cases unable to continue providing meals to children, since mid-March. Summer hunger started early this year.

Together we can help ease the burden on families and ensure growing children get the nourishment they need to grow, play, and learn. Our #StopSummerHunger goal this year is to raise 4.4 million meals.

What the Food Bank is doing:

In the Food Bank’s 34-county service area, just over 300,000 (1 in 5) children are eligible for free or reduced cost breakfast and lunch- and in some cases, those meals haven’t been available since mid-March. With our many partners, the Food Bank is working provide as many of those meals as possible to children and teens for as long as needed, and have opened more than 30 free meal sites since April.

In addition, we are distributing thousands of family-sized boxes, each containing 20 meals, to our partners operating pantries and soup kitchens, to school districts for children and families, and to seniors.

How you can help the Food Bank meet the increased need:

  1. Donate funds – Because of the strength of community relationships, the Food Bank can stretch the gift of a single dollar to provide 5 meals worth of food for a neighbor. And during the months of June and July, your donation is DOUBLED – meaning every dollar can provide 10 meals for the community.
  2. Involve your friends – Want to mobilize your neighborhood, church group, or family? Holding a Virtual Food Drive is a great way to help – while practicing social distancing. Visit foodbankcenc.org/vfd to get started!
  3. Donate time – If you are a healthy adult and want to volunteer, you can self-schedule a shift at foodbankcenc.org/volunteer. Current volunteer sessions are being kept much smaller than traditional volunteer groups to best accommodate social distancing. We are also limiting volunteering to ages 18-60 at this time, to best protect vulnerable populations.
  4. Donate food – We’re always in need of the types of shelf-stable items that you pick up for your own family: things like peanut butter, canned tuna fish and chicken, soup, pasta, and canned fruits and veggies.

Thank you to our #StopSummerHunger Sponsors!

Aug
1
Sat
2020
Partner Agency Appreciation Month
Aug 1 – Aug 31 all-day

August is Partner Agency Appreciation Month

¡Una Dosis Diaria de Gracias! Agosto es Mes de Agradecimiento a Nuestras Agencias Colaboradas.

August is Partner Appreciation Month

The Food Bank’s Partner Services and Public Policy Department has designated August as Partner Appreciation Month. It is an opportunity for the Food Bank to recognize all the amazing work done by our partner agency network to nourish, build and empower their local communities. We have always considered our partners to be dedicated hunger-relief advocates, but during this time of the COVID-19 pandemic they have shown us truly what it means to be hunger heroes: dedicated, compassionate, and enduring.

To show how much we appreciate our partners, we have planned virtual activities for the month of August. These activities range from sharing Thank You Messages to offering small tokens of our appreciation. We know that just saying thank you will never be enough to encompass all of what our partners mean to the Food Bank, but we agree that it is where we should start.

Activity 1: Daily Dose of Thank You

“Gratitude is a powerful catalyst for happiness…” (A. Collette) We realize the power of starting off the week on a positive note. Every Monday in August, the Partner Appreciation Committee will send a Thank You Message to partners via email from a Food Bank Staff or Board Member. Feel free to share these messages of encouragement with your agency staff and/or volunteers.

Activity 2: Daily Dose of Thank You
Tell Me Something Good Edition

Did you know that the Food Bank distributed its 1 billionth pound this year? Every Friday in August, the Partner Appreciation Committee will send partners a Tell Me Something Good (TMSG) Email that announces a milestone that the Food Bank and its network has reached this year. In addition, in TMSG we will include a Thank You Message from a Food Bank Staff Member and an announcement of the winners of our Partner Agency Raffle. Stay tuned for TMSG’s exciting announcements.

Activity 3: Partner Appreciation Raffle

Every Friday during the month of August, the Partner Appreciation Committee will announce 28 winners of our raffle. The winners will be announced in our TMSG Email. To win partners must be in good standing. To see a full listing of requirements to win, please refer to the Partner Appreciation Month Introduction Email. All partners that fit the eligibility requirements are automatically enrolled in the raffle. “May the odds be ever in your favor.”

Activity 4: Virtual Partner Agency Milestone Certificate Presentation
Date: week of August 24-28

Did you know that the Food Bank is commemorating its 40th anniversary this year? In honor of recognizing 40 years of nourishing, building and empowering communities the Partner Services Department would like to recognize our partners and their decade milestones. Each agency will receive a personal Thank You message from their Outreach Coordinator that includes a copy of their decade milestone certificate.

Activity 5: State of the Food Bank: A Virtual Conversation Between Food Bank Leadership and Partner Agencies

Date: September 1, 2020
Time: 3pm-4:30pm
Virtual Meeting Location: WebEx

Join Peter Werbicki, President & CEO of the Food Bank and Earline Middleton, Vice President of Partner Services & Public Policy for a conversation reflecting on the Food Bank’s 40 years of service, the organization’s Strategic Plan highlighting our response to the COVID-19 Pandemic, advocacy efforts and more. Before and during this conversation there will be opportunities for partners to submit questions.

This event is open to all partner agencies of the Food Bank on a first come, first served basis. The conversation will take place via WebEx with an option to call in for the meeting. The State of the Food Bank will be recorded and distributed later for partners to view who could not attend the live session. Due to limited spaces, please limit your agency representatives to two people if they are joining the meeting using separate devices.

How to Participate:

  • All Food Bank partners are invited to participate. We are asking that partners RSVP for the event. To register, please send  an email to appreciation@foodbankcenc.org. In your RSVP email, please include agency name, agency number and email address.
  • If you would like to submit a question for the leadership, please send your question to Jessica at jledbetter@foodbankcenc.org by 4pm Thursday, August 27th. Please include agency name, agency number, email, and contact person’s name with all questions.

Partner Services and Public Policy Department Quote

This year marks the 40th anniversary of serving communities with food for daily nourishment, supplies during disasters, and now hope during a pandemic. This August we honor our collective partner agency network. Thank you for providing food assistance, benefit support, programs, and educational opportunities for communities throughout our 34-county service area. You have been here with us, never wavering in your commitment to serving others. Rain, snow, sleet, shine, hurricane, or pandemic, your doors have remained open, creating an environment of hope. We continue to work every day to ensure no one goes hungry. We could not do what we do without YOU!

Este año se celebra el 40° aniversario de servir a las comunidades proporcionando alimentos para la alimentación diaria, suministros durante los desastres y ahora con esperanza durante una pandemia. Este Agosto estamos honrando a nuestra red de agencias colaboradas. Gracias por proporcionar asistencia alimenticia, apoyo a beneficios, programas y oportunidades educativas para las comunidades en cada uno de los 34 condados a los cuales servimos. Ustedes siempre han estado aquí con nosotros sin poner en duda el compromiso de servir a los demás. Con lluvia, nieve, huracán o pandemia sus puertas han permanecido abiertas creando un ambiente de esperanza. Seguiremos trabajando todos los días para asegurarnos de que nadie pase hambre. ¡No podríamos hacer lo que hacemos sin USTEDES!

Partner Appreciation Committee Quote

A movement starts with individual will power and sustains itself with collective willpower. Together we are an unstoppable force for change; 900 hunger relief agencies and growing.

 

Sep
9
Wed
2020
Farms, Food, and Hunger: A conversation with candidates @ Zoom
Sep 9 @ 7:00 pm – 8:30 pm

Join a virtual, nonpartisan candidate forum to hear state level candidates discuss important issues related to food, farming, and hunger in our state. Register Here: bit.ly/FarmFoodHunger

You are invited to submit a farm, food, or hunger-related question that you would like the candidates to answer during the virtual conversation in the “Questions/Comments” section when registering. If your question is directed to a certain candidate position (i.e. School Superintendent), please specify so in your question. There is no guarantee that you question will be selected.

Confirmed state-level candidates:

  • Jessica Holmes and Josh Dobson for Labor Commissioner
  • Steve Troxler and Jennifer Wadsworth for Commissioner of Agriculture
  • Catherine Truitt and Jen Mangrum for Superintendent of Public Education
  • Yvonne Holley for Lieutenant Governor
  • Moderator: Calvin Allen, Rural Forward NC Director

farms food and hunger a conversation with candidates

This event is being hosted by:

  • Carolina Farm Stewardship Association | https://www.carolinafarmstewards.org/
  • Feeding the Carolinas | https://feedingthecarolinas.org/
  • Moms Rising | https://www.momsrising.org/campaigns/north-carolina
  • North Carolina Alliance for Health | https://www.ncallianceforhealth.org/
  • NC Rural Center | https://www.ncruralcenter.org/
  • Rural Advancement Foundation International- USA | https://www.rafiusa.org/
Oct
22
Thu
2020
Socially-Distanced Food Lion Hunger Relief Day at the NC State Fair @ NC State Fair Gate 9
Oct 22 @ 8:00 am – 8:30 pm

We may not be able to attend the N.C. State Fair together this year, but North Carolinians can still donate canned food and get their fair food fix!

Drop-off donations of nonperishable foods from 8 AM – 8:30 PM. Click here for our most needed food items. Food Lion will have giveaways of $5 gift cards and other items for the first 500 families who donate food!

How to drop off can donations: Approach the Fairgrounds navigating towards Gate 9. Follow the path laid out by the red arrows in the top-left corner of the fairgrounds map below, driving towards Youth Center Drive. Volunteers will collect your can donations in a safe way while you stay in the car.  Drive Thru Food Drive State Fairgrounds Map 2020

October 22, 2020 is Hunger Relief Day at the NC State Fair

Why Hunger Relief Day at the NC State Fair

Hunger is a serious problem every day in central and eastern North Carolina. Working families, children, and seniors—struggled to consistently get food on their table; especially nutritious food. This year, the need is even more staggering, because of the COVID-19 crisis: more than 760,000 people are facing hunger – approximately a 38% increase over last year. Many families are finding themselves in this situation for the first time- previously making their budgets work, but no longer able to make ends meet due to unemployment, furlough, or reduced hours.

From our partners on the front lines, we know that pantries were serving as a bridge to help people make it to their next paycheck. Now that family finances are stretched even further, food from the pantries we serve is often the only food families are able to get. Our friends and neighbors are struggling with rent, healthcare, and medicine costs, and the issue of pride in needing to ask for help. With basic needs being hard to meet, extras like big holiday feasts or presents are out of reach for many families

Despite food supply chain challenges and new operations to safely supply food, the Food Bank has distributed record amounts in the last few months, thanks to community support and new government relief programs we’re administering—but we’re still not meeting the incredible need right now. The food collected on this special Hunger Relief Day will go a long way in providing much needed relief for our friends and neighbors.

Online donations to support our COVID-19 relief efforts are also being accepted.

Nov
1
Sun
2020
Holiday Meals Match
Nov 1 – Dec 31 all-day

We all know the feeling of warmth, security, and belonging that comes from being around a meal with family. This year, we’re asking you to help us provide hope for the holidays. 

Tis the season. Fill 2x as many hungry tummies. Your gift now can be doubled! Give today

2020 has been especially devastating for many of our already vulnerable friends and neighbors. The 38% increase in need in our service area due to COVID-19 means now more than ever we want the families we support to have enough healthy and nutritious food this holiday season. Help us provide hope and ensure the families we serve have what they need to enjoy a warm, safe, and happy holiday season with their loved ones.

Visit foodbankcenc.org/hope to make a MATCHED donation and provide hope with a warm meal for 2x as many people in need this holiday season. 

Moved by the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic, generous friends of the Food Bank have created the largest match pot in our 40 year history: $292,000! We need you to give what you are able, by December 31, so that we can reach the full match potential — providing balanced meals and hope to neighbors across our service area.

Thank you to our Holiday Meals Match Sponsors!

Other ways you can help the Food Bank meet the increased need:

  1. Involve your friends – Want to mobilize your neighborhood, church group, or family? Holding a Virtual Food Drive is a great way to help – while practicing social distancing. Visit foodbankcenc.org/vfd to get started!
  2. Donate time – If you are a healthy adult and want to volunteer, you can self-schedule a shift at foodbankcenc.org/volunteer. Current volunteer sessions are being kept much smaller than traditional volunteer groups to best accommodate social distancing. We are also limiting volunteering to ages 18-60 at this time, to best protect vulnerable populations.
  3. Donate food – We’re always in need of the types of shelf-stable items that you pick up for your own family: things like peanut butter, canned tuna fish and chicken, soup, pasta, and canned fruits and veggies.  Visit https://foodbankcenc.org/get-involved/host-a-food-fund-drive/ to get more information!
Nov
3
Tue
2020
Vote to End Hunger
Nov 3 @ 6:30 am – 7:30 pm

During this time of crisis our neighbors need us more than ever. Millions of Americans have applied for unemployment and need help filling their fridges. If you agree that everyone one should be able to put nutritious and healthy food on the table, make a plan to vote in this year’s election. By voting, either in person or from home, you can help ensure no family has to choose between buying groceries or paying rent.

Vote to end HungerGet started today
Check your registration, make a plan, and help your friends vote! 

Sample Ballots are available now
Registered voters may enter their information into the Board of Election’s Voter Search tool to preview their 2020 ballot. Get informed today by looking up ballot issues and local races in your area, or browsing the nonpartisan 2020 NC Voter Guide.

Election Day is Tuesday, November 3
Early voting in NC runs October 15-31, and vote by mail has already begun in NC. For more information on how, where, and when you can vote, visit the voter information page on North Carolina State Board of Election’s website.



Beyond voting
The Food Bank operates from a public policy and advocacy platform that addresses federal, state, and municipal policies that impact hunger relief and support an environment where all North Carolinians thrive. Learn more about our public policy platform here

Nov
16
Mon
2020
Week of Appreciation
Nov 16 – Nov 20 all-day

A WEEK OF APPRECIATIONThis year brought challenges we never could have predicted. The need in our area has risen to over 750,000 North Carolinians facing food insecurity, one third of whom are children. We distributed roughly 92 million pounds of food, safely hosted volunteers that gave over 215,000 hours of their time to support our work, and changed our operations to adapt to the COVID-19 pandemic.  The 38% increase in need has been staggering, and we are continually thankful for supporters like you who make our work possible. 

This year the businesses and organizations that support us raised over 85 million meals to through food and funds to nourish families in North Carolina. Each year it’s important to recognize the dedication and investment these companies are making in the community and in our Food Bank. Check out this year’s CORE Leadership Circle – our largest donors giving both funds and food to support our vision that no one goes hungry.

Those numbers alone make it clear that we could not do what we do without your support. Thank you to everyone who supports the work we’re doing together to end hungerThanks to you, we can be here for the long haul for neighbors in need.  

On behalf of all of us at the Food Bank and those we serve – thank you. 

 

A MESSAGE OF GRATITUDE FROM OUR PRESIDENT/CEO PETER WERBICKI

 

 

HONORING 2020 HUNT-MORGRIDGE WINNER REVEREND LEX MATHEWS

Reverend Lex Mathews came to the Tarheel state to serve as Chaplain to the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in 1970. Five years later, he was named the Director of Christian Social Ministries at the Episcopal Diocese of North Carolina. “Mr. Mathews will be linking needs with resources and people with interests,” read an announcement of this new role for Lex. In his first report as Director, Reverend Mathews challenged all parishes and missions to raise an amount equal to 10% of their budgets and use this to benefit low-income and food insecure people in their communities. Local committees formed under his leadership to fundraise and distribute money to support existing nonprofits or start programming when needed. After seeing a news story about the first food bank in Arizona, Lex began to explore the idea of starting one in the Triangle. Lex brought together a group of community leaders to do some research and help identify the Food Bank’s first Executive Director, Barbara Oates. He also secured initial funding from the Diocese, found a building, and signed the lease. Lex continued to serve as a mentor for Barbara, making connections with local leaders, assisting with fundraising, and eventually bringing the other North Carolina food banks together. Reverend Mathews was truly ahead of his time – he was working to nourish people, but was also addressing the root causes of poverty and hunger like affordable housing and child care, continuing education, and increased access to healthcare.

 

 

 

HARVEST SALAD RECIPE

As a token of our appreciation, our Nutrition Education Team has created this delicious Harvest Salad recipe for you, complete with a recipe demonstration video!
Harvest Salad recipe card

 
 
 

THANK YOU VOLUNTEERS!

We would like to extend a big thank you to our volunteer workforce for your continuous giving to the Food Bank, especially during these unprecedented times. As Hunger Heroes, you have supplied us with the extra boost needed in the fight to end hunger. Due to the impact of COVID-19, about 1-in-5 people and 1-in-3 children are living with food insecurity. Your support and hard work have helped the Food Bank distribute record-breaking pounds of food across our service area during the pandemic. We truly could not serve our communities without the support of our volunteers so thank you for all that you do! We hope to continue growing newer and stronger relationships with those interested in getting involved.

We also wanted to express our gratitude to those individuals who became regular volunteers during COVID-19 relief efforts. Durham: Kimberly McBride, Susan Finer, Kathy Kay, Rachel Cohn, Tasala Rufai, Christa Witherspoon. Greenville: Todd Sanford and Wanda Dixon. Raleigh: Bob Meadows, Shawn Janairo, Karl Kirkeby, Jess Ryu, Kathy Abode, Mike Paine, Kevin Pietras, Kathy Pietras, James Chang, Greg Cyr, Jennifer Delacey, Melanie Henderson, Tony Stiller, Jim Russell, Dwayne White, Dan Frizzell, Katharine DeVilbiss, Karen Nyreen, Susan Gates, Susan Brosnan, Krish Bhardwaj, Tammie Kuhn, Janine Doods, Steven Andrews, Jamie Hill, Jennings Wright, Kiran Saini, Kicab Castaneda-Mendez, Ellen Adelman, Joe Koon, Larry Robertson, Larry Robinson, Ken & Janet Slagle, David Bissette, Richard Carroll, Steve Andrew, Sheba Kanjelkheir, Bill Santa Rosa, Joe Erdelyi, Patti Gove, Paula Malzone, Jackie Braun, Mary, Warren, & Marie Cox, Mark Desrosiers, Vytautas Smetona, Virginia Cleary, Dianne Wanyama, Jeremy Lonnman, Meghan Flaherty, Mel Kilberg, Telly Dobbin, John Ricciardi, Bill Turnau, Sanjay Prasad, Claire Spackman, William & Andrew, Kristin Ewan, Sofia Acosta, Patrick Barry,  Walter Hunt, Cathy Wilfong, Janet Racketa, Sallie Whelan.

Elevation Church

A special thank you to Elevation Church – Raleigh! Elevation Church has been an integral partner of the Food Bank this year while supporting the Food Bank in various capacities. Elevation has graciously donated $40,000 throughout the course of the pandemic. Elevation’s phenomenal team of volunteers have also supported the Food Bank through sorting and packing 300,000 meals in the warehouse, delivering 11,000 pounds of food to doorsteps, partnering with the WAKE Cares Program to provide 450 family boxes and even working in our community garden space to set the groundwork for future crop harvests.

 

WHY YOUR SUPPORT MATTERS

Across our service area, 38% more neighbors will need help with food this year due to COVID-19. Many of our local Partner Agencies, like Loaves & Fishes Ministries in Warren County, have told us they needed more food in order to serve more people. In response, the Food Bank is providing additional food and supplies to help close the extensive hunger gap, while Warren County is helping Loaves and Fishes is partnering with the County to temporarily move their pantry into a larger space with more refrigeration. Through community collaboration, Loaves and Fishes will be able to distribute not just more food, but more healthy perishable foods like produce, meats, and dairy. Thank you to all the generous donors for enabling the Food Bank to distribute a record amount of food to the community through our Partner Agency network!

 

FOOD BANK OF THE YEAR

In case you hadn’t heard, the Food Bank of Central & Eastern North Carolina has been named Food Bank of the Year by Feeding America! The ‘Member of the Year’ award is one of the highest honors awarded to food bank leaders. Feeding America, a national association of more than 200 food banks nationwide, chose our Food Bank for our local community-building, contributions to the Feeding America network, and innovative solutions in ending hunger. We are honored, humbled, and happy to receive this recognition. It will bolster us as we continue working to nourish neighbors and empower communities, even as the COVID-19 pandemic has increased food insecurity 38% in our service area. We are grateful to YOU for making this important work possible. This award belongs to you, too, for believing in our No One Goes Hungry vision!

Feeding America's Member Of The Year

Jan
1
Fri
2021
Shopping for a Cause
Jan 1 – Dec 31 all-day

Shop with our partners below to support the Food Bank!

  • Visit one of the Wegmans Food Markets below between 10/17-11/27 for their Check Out Hunger Campaign.  Customers can donate $1, $2, $3, $5, round up their bill, or give any amount at checkout with 100 percent of the proceeds going to  the Food  Bank.