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No Hungry Bellies

October 2023 - What’s Changed at the Newport Food Pantry?

Serving Lincoln County and Newport, Oregon since 2011, this 501(c)(3) non-profit has had one mission: working to eliminate food insecurity by offering a supply of food to those in need. Occasionally, over the years, the Pantry has had an employee. Most of the years, the Pantry ran solely on volunteers and public donations. Then COVID hit, and things changed.

In January 2023, the Pantry began opening every Tuesday from 2:30 to 4:00 pm, offering those in need a 4-7-day supply of food on a weekly basis. Every client selects the type of food they want from our available inventory, which typically includes between 25 and 40 items, including produce. The Pantry tailors the clients' orders to fit the size of their family unit. The Pantry also offers a prepared meal to every client picking up food.

In April 2023, the Board of Directors changed. The founders, who were also board members, retired, and eight new Board of Directors came on to serve, all of whom are working volunteers. The Pantry went from having six volunteers to currently having over 40 who want to serve. The Pantry was serving 20-40 individuals weekly and making 20-25 lunch/sandwich meals to distribute every Tuesday.

In May and June 2023, the Board realized that the potential need for food was far greater than anticipated. In May, the Pantry served 512 people; in June, 600 individuals, and made over 200 lunch/sandwich meals each month, both record months. The Pantry hired a manager to handle the growing operations and a cook to oversee the prepared meal program, making lunch/sandwich meals and cooking dinner for Celebrate Recovery every Tuesday night.

August 2023 set a new record for the pantry. The Pantry provided a 4-7-day supply of food for 894 individuals, made 537 lunch/sandwich meals, and served 280 dinners at Celebrate Recovery.

Looking back at how things have changed in October 2023:

  • Now, the pantry serves well over 500 individuals, providing them with a week's supply of food.

  • It offers over 500 lunch/sandwich meals and feeds over 200 dinners at Celebrate Recovery.

  • Food donations have almost doubled in size due to new relationships with Grocery Outlet, Franz Bakery, Munoz Farms, six local church groups, and Safeway that have been developed.

We don't see the numbers served diminishing in the new year. If you are reading this blog, you may be asking yourself, "How may I help?"

Financially, as a non-profit, your donations may be tax-deductible. We accept both securities and cash donations. We are happy to discuss more advanced estate and gift plans with you and your advisors. Volunteer opportunities are available, and inquiries should be made on our website: newportfoodpantry.org.

For additional information or questions, please email info@newportfoodpantry.org. If you have time on a Tuesday afternoon, come visit the Newport Food Pantry in operation from 2:30 to 4:00 pm.


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