How Food Banking Works
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 nearly 13 million pounds of food annually to the northeast corner of the state requires coordination and commitment.
Feeding thousands of 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 nearly 400 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.
1. Food is donated
Food and grocery products are donated and/or received from local food companies, government agencies, food drives, affiliates, individuals, gardeners, farmers, hunters, and special purchases.
2. Food is transported
Community Harvest maintains a fleet of refrigerated trucks which collects and delivers the food. Transportation costs are significant.
3. Food is inspected, stored, and distributed
Received food is inspected for quality and sorted for distribution to nearly 400 member agencies and CHFB in-house programs.
4. Food is given directly to those who need it
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. This funding helps us to pay for the costs associated with food banking, such as transportation, sorting, and warehouse costs. 91% of all funding we receive goes directly to programs.