Who are Midwest Food Bank's nonprofit partners?
The numbers say Midwest Food Bank gave about $430 million worth of food at no cost to about 2,100 food partners in the U.S. and around the world in 2021.
That $430 million number represents the food those food partners receive from MFB - at no cost. That's a big deal as it allows them to use their money in other areas of their ministries - like fuel to drive to MFB, a new vehicle, or expanding their physical space.
The numbers are just one part of the story, though. Who are those food partners? They are people volunteering at nonprofits with a heart to help their neighbors in need. Here at MFB, we have the privilege of working alongside them every day. They include food pantries, soup kitchens, homeless shelters, residential programs, and children feeding programs.
There are some requirements for being a nonprofit partner:
- Be nonprofit 501(c)(3) organizations.
- Participate in an annual certification process.
- Agree to give the food away at no charge.
"They really love serving people," says Karl Steidinger, Executive Director of MFB Florida. The Florida location of MFB has about 190 nonprofit partners receiving food. "Many of them are specialized - serving a specific population, such as homeless veterans, single moms, children, or senior citizens."
"Many MFB partners are seeing people who have never come for help before," says Kathy Anderson-Martin, Executive Director of MFB Pennsylvania. "They are particularly grateful for the nutritious food we offer them - things like meat, cheese, eggs, and produce."
She relates a story from a local church food pantry. "An elderly client was recently very happy to receive a pound of bacon from MFB," says Kathy. "They were so happy to bless this woman with something that had become a luxury she couldn't afford."
The food partners not only come to MFB locations, but they often become like family to MFB staff and volunteers. Karl remembers going to Hearts and Homes for Veterans in Ft. Myers to let them know they were able to receive food from MFB after being on a waitlist.
"He couldn't even talk. He broke down crying," says Karl about Don, the lead volunteer. "For probably a year he would come up and give me a hug when he came to our warehouse. He was just overwhelmed by MFB's support."
The numbers are big, but people are beyond what a number can define. At MFB, we are thankful to help them help others. See videos and more information about some of our partners and food recipients.
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