Food Pantry

Members and friends of the church gather each Thursday to provide essential food items to our neighbors who are in need.

This week, 17 volunteers provided groceries to 88 families.

 

 

Food Pantry is open every Thursday at 10 am.

 

   

Community Role and Mission

As a primary Social Action of our church for the last 14 years, the FPC Food Pantry provides emergency food relief to local residents of the Brooklyn Heights area, an underserved population designated as “high need” by the NYC Food Bank due to a lack of hunger-relief services in the area.

Client Need

In 2009, the FPC Food Pantry experienced a 58% increase in number of people visiting the pantry for emergency and supplementary food and a call to increased action to create additional resources to assist our community.  In 2012, this need remained at an all-time high with up to 120 people coming to us for food each Thursday morning. The economy has receded while demand increases for an extra bag or two of life-giving groceries, particularly by low-income caregivers and out-of-work breadwinners. Clients are often the working poor of all ages with fixed incomes and limited mobility, making the FPC Food Pantry an important source of support. All people are welcome to the pantry; no one is turned away for any reason.

Hunger Relief and  the New “Client-Choice” Pantry

We listened to our clients, learned best pantry practices and designed our program to allow for choice, transitioning to “The Client Choice” Model of food pantry.  This model of pantry encourages clients to select food based on their own preferences, needs, and circumstances, which means more freedom and dignity and less produce being discarded at home.

 

Fostering Leadership in our Community

Another major accomplishment this year included an expansion of the volunteer base within the community. This year we focused on fostering leadership and promoting intergenerational responsibility in partnership with local schools and houses of worship.

Through community outreach, the FPC Food Pantry solidified partnerships resulting in more than six food drives (back-to-school, holiday, and Spring).

Many school partners were able to provide their students with credit for volunteer hours on a weekly basis. Our local Community-Supported Agriculture partner, Sweet Pea CSA, provided their members with credit for volunteer hours served, as well as gave back to the pantry a second time through meaningful, personal donations.  Leadership was fostered at other houses of worship in Brooklyn Heights, creating a faith-based network of support during the year.

Our local partners include:

  • The Presbytery of NYC
  • Brooklyn Bridge CSA
  • First Unitarian Congregational Society
  • Food Bank for NYC
  • Packer Collegiate Institute
  • Partners Community Options
  • St. Ann’s School
  • St. Paul's Episcopal Church
  • Sweet Pea CSA
  • YAI Network

For more information, or if you are interested in voluteering for the Food Pantry, contact Jane Woland.

The Food Pantry is under the guidance of the Social Action Committee.

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