It’s Been A Year!
It seems like only yesterday when the Community Food Center (CFC) opened it’s pilot located at 6th and Lehigh but in actuality we’re coming upon on 1 Year Anniversary. We opened our doors on November 17th, 2009 with great anticipation of serving a community in great need.
In our first week we witnessed hundreds of families come to us in need of food assistance from all over Philadelphia. Within weeks we had reached our capacity with the staff and resources available to us. At a time when many families look to local organizations for help we were able to offer multiple referrals for those in the community.
As the program began to stabilize our ability to connect with the community was staggering. Familiar faces and names became people with stories, eager to discuss the weeks’ events and trials. Families, neighbors and the community were embracing us (sometimes literally) with each week that passed by in our basement haven. Even when there were challenges there was always an understanding of the purpose of the CFC and through that understanding the program blossomed and grew.
In the spring we brought together our first Advisory Committee, a small group of community members, to discuss the development of the program and learn from those who utilize it. The meeting was a huge success that helped us further understand the impact of the program as a whole and the affect it had on those we were serving. Whether it was the change of hours or the services offered, this meeting created the opportunity for honest feedback in order to help the program grow.
As we embark on our first anniversary and contemplate the successes we have had in the last year, there is still much work to be done and potential for future endeavors. There are still hundreds in the area who are in need of food assistance. The community food center is in need of dedicated volunteers to help us serve the neighborhood on a daily basis. The amount of donated food has significantly dropped thereby reducing the amount that can be distributed into communities in the Delaware Valley.
In the next year we have many challenges to face, but through the strong community support and partnership that have been cultivated over the past year the CFC staff and community members are ready to take on the next year in full force with conviction and dedication, Happy Anniversary!
The Community Food Center is made possible in part funding from the Samuel S. Fels Fund, The Dolfinger-McMahon Foundation, and Fiber-Line Incorporated’s Organized Giving Committee.