Food Bank resources are critical!

Our club has organized a joint Rotary Clubs of Fort Collins project to support a mobile food pantry to provide food to Fort Collins families in northeast Fort Collins.

Heather Buoniconti from our club and Chief Development Officer for the Food Bank for Larimer County tells us, "We know that Poudre High School (PHS) is centered in one of the most racially disparate census tracts in Larimer County with 49% of LatinX individuals living below the poverty line as opposed to 16% of white residents.

Since its inception this location has served a different population than our other locations. Since COVID started 22% of households that use our Food Share pantries (brick and mortar locations in FC and Loveland) are new, but a staggering 93% of households visiting this location have been new. In addition, 42% of the families visiting this location have asked to remain anonymous which is a significantly higher percentage than our other locations. Each month, we serve on average approximately 600-800 individuals through our PHS pantry."

During the COVID-19 crisis, the Food Bank is hosting pop-up mobile food pantries throughout Larimer County. Anyone in need of food is welcome to attend. The pantries are “drive-through” where clients can receive a variety of pre-selected food items. Spanish translation will be available.

The next upcoming 2021 dates are: Apr 15, May 6, May 20, June 3 and June 17. 5:00 – 6:30 pm at Poudre High School.

We have already raised $26,500 toward our goal and the Rotary After Work Club is featuring this project in its Fort Collins port of its "Cruise Ship Fun-tacular" fundraiser in April. Kathe and Steve Haake kicked off this project with a generous $10,000 donation, which has been matched ($10,000) by our Board using expense savings from our budget. The Breakfast Club has donated an additional $4,000.  If you would like to donate to this project, please email me your pledge using this link:

Thank you!

Our beneficiary
What are funds used for?
 

Founded in 1984, the Food Bank for Larimer County is the central hub for charitable food distribution in our area, serving one in ten people in Larimer County. Each year, we collect and distribute enough food for more than 7.5 million meals. Our mission is to feed all in need through community partnerships and hunger-relief programs.

COVID-19 presented a complex crisis of new need, increased volunteer challenges and disruptions to our food supply and distribution models. We have the potential to emerge from this pandemic stronger and even better positioned to meet the evolving needs of our community.

In March 2020, we made immediate shifts in how we were distributing food, particularly through our Food Share pantries that were altered to be socially distanced and safe drive-through models. Shortly after this change, we recognized that there was additional need so we created pop up pantries (PUPs) to target under-served areas of the community.

The impact of these pantries is that the Food Bank for Larimer County is increasing access for many community members to receive free nutritious food which in turn saves them money for other basic needs. Families received milk, dry goods, produce, frozen items and more and were incredibly thankful for all that was provided!

For the past several months, we have had twice-monthly pantry services at Poudre High School and they have been incredibly well received by our clients. There are several reasons we chose this particular location. We knew it was important to the school community and we also know that PHS is centered in one the most racially disparate census tracts in Larimer County with 49% of LatinX individuals living below the poverty line as opposed to 16% of white residents.

Since its inception this location has served a different population than our other locations. Since COVID started 22% of households that use our Food Share pantries (brick and mortar locations in FC and Loveland) are new, but a staggering 93% of households visiting this location have been new. In addition, 42% of the families visiting this location have asked to remain anonymous which is a significantly higher percentage than our other locations. Each month, we serve on average approximately 600-800 individuals through our PHS pantry.

Given the success of this location, and the partnerships we have formed with PHS, we are moving away from considering this as a temporary location (a PUP), and more in-line with our other mobile partnerships. The term “PUP” has been used by our organization since the inception of these pantries in spring of 2020 as it was truly that…a quickly adapted model that allowed us to vet different locations and see what worked.

Our PHS Mobile Pantry is providing valuable insight into those at-risk of hunger, especially in our vulnerable populations. We have the funds to pay for this pantry through the remainder of our fiscal year (ending on June 30th 2021). An additional $65,000 will continue this pantry for another year until June, 2022. We may continue beyond that point but at this point we are unable to make that determination as there are too many variables that would need to be considered. The primary expense would be hiring a full-time Mobile Pantry Coordinator to operate not only this site but serve as a staff representative for our other mobile pantries. When Covid-19 hit, we were able to secure some temporary staff to help ease the workload among our operations staff which allowed them to rotate shifts at each site. However, the temporary staff are only contracted through June 2021 and we will not be able to sustain the additional labor these pantries require from our current staff.

Help us reach our goal!
Thank you to our multitude of generous donors!
 
Steve and Kathe Haake $10,000
Foothills Rotary Board $10,000
Fort Collins Breakfast Rotary $4,000
Anonymous donors $1,500
Linda Vomaske $1,000
Rotary After Work FunTacular $500
Total $28,000
How to donate

You can help today, it's very simple.

  1. Press this button:
    which will send an email to president@fcfoothillsrotary.com.
    Let us know your name, the amount, and whether we should list you as a named supporter of the campaign.
  2. You will be invoiced via email.
  3. You can pay online!

It's that simple!