Second Harvest Community Food Bank Blog
Second Harvest Partners With Grocers
This is a response to the Editorial “Food bank pursues ambitious vision” that ran in the St. Joseph News Press on Saturday, September 8.
I am writing in response to the opinion piece Sunday titled “Food bank pursues ambitious vision.”
While we appreciate the editorial highlighting the progressive thinking behind Fresh Start, I was troubled about the concerns shared about Second Harvest Community Food Bank supposedly competing with the private sector. Rest assured that isn’t the case.
The grocer retailers in our community of St. Joseph are some of our organization’s strongest supporters. The goal of Fresh Start is to introduce a small outlet for nutritious food for those who reside in the west side “food desert” while also providing emergency food assistance for those at or below 200 percent of the federal poverty level.
As for the innovative revenue component associated with Fresh Start, it is important to note we anticipate nearly all revenue generation to be through the use of food stamp assistance. While some may see this as competition with the private sector, I believe it is important to add that our highly successful “Close the Gap” program has enrolled more than 600 members of our community onto food stamps. In turn, this has provided more than $3 million in economic activity currently flowing through local grocery stores.
We are a friend and partner with our grocer retailers in all communities that make up our 19-county service territory. Donors, stakeholders, friends and St. Joseph residents should know Second Harvest is firmly and passionately on the side of those seeking a better, healthier, more food-secure community.
David M. Davenport, CFRE
Chief Executive Officer
Second Harvest Community Food Bank
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