Six days a week, Community Harvest Food Bank of northeast Indiana works with a network of food donors, social service organizations and churches to provide food to hungry people in its nine county service area. Delivering 11 million pounds of food annually to the northeast corner of the state requires coordination and commitment.
Feeding 21,100 hungry people a week also requires funding for every step of the process—from acquiring food, to safe food storage, to transportation of that food to 430 member agencies. With a modest budget, Community Harvest successfully completes the complex process of delivering food to children, families and seniors and serves as a model for other food banks not only around the United States but around the world.
How We Do It
1. Food is donated
Food and grocery products are donated and/or received from local food companies, government agencies, food drives, Feeding America, individuals, gardeners, farmers, hunters, Feeding Indiana’s Hungry and special purchases.
2. Food is transported
The food bank maintains a fleet of refrigerated trucks which collects and delivers the food. Transportation costs are significant.
3. Food is inspected, stored and distributed to member agencies
Once the food bank receives a shipment of food, it is inspected for quality and sorted for distribution to member agencies through its nine county service area. This includes refrigerated storage for perishable items like milk, eggs and meat.
4. Food is given directly to those who need it via a network of Community Partners
Member agencies such as soup kitchens, women’s shelters, youth centers, day care facilities, health clinics and senior programs receive food from Community Harvest and then provide assistance to people in need. Community Harvest also distributes food via seven direct service programs: Kids Cafe, the Backpack Program, SeniorPak, Farm Wagon, Community Cupboard, Holiday Meals, and Disaster Assistance.
5. Funding is received
Community Harvest receives funding via foundations, individuals, corporations, special events, member agency shared handling fees, and government commodity contracts.