Food for Durham Launches as Community-Led Initiative to Benefit Durham County Food Distribution Organizations
Food for Durham, a community-led initiative, launches today to help local food and hunger relief nonprofits secure food, equipment and other related needs to continue supporting the community during the COVID-19 pandemic and beyond. Food For Durham is an extension of the Durham One Fund and now is accepting donations to benefit Durham County food and hunger relief partners.
With a focus on empowering residents to make the decisions that will provide the best solutions to meet community needs, Food for Durham is forming a committee featuring representatives from the same group of community food partners to help make these important funding decisions.
During the COVID-19 pandemic, an existing community hunger challenge turned into a much larger crisis and brought new attention to the plight of Durham’s food insecure children, individuals, seniors and families. Durham food distribution organizations saw demand for services increase anywhere from 50 percent to 500 percent in the last year, warranting the need for additional funding, according to Durham County Government’s Food Security Task Force, which partnered with United Way of the Greater Triangle to launch Food for Durham.
“As we’ve surveyed Durham food pantries over the last year, they’ve consistently told us that they need additional dollars to meet higher levels of need,” said Donna Rewalt, Durham County’s Cooperative Extension Director and lead staff person for the County’s Food Security Task Force. “With this initiative, representatives from this same group of community food partners will be deciding how dollars from the food fund will be reinvested into the community to meet these needs.”
A committee comprised of individuals from the local food and hunger advocacy community will soon form to determine fund distribution criteria and plan a process for nonprofit agencies to apply for funding from Food for Durham. United Way of the Greater Triangle will provide grant-making and other administrative support to the Food for Durham committee.
“We must ensure that we’re relying on the individuals at the heart of this food insecurity challenge – the residents – to tell us how best to support them,” said Nick Allen, United Way of the Greater Triangle’s Chief Program Officer. “Contributions to Food for Durham will enable our local nonprofits to better address these community needs in the foreseeable future.”
The Food for Durham initiative follows other Durham One Fund purposes, including the April 2019 Downtown Durham gas explosion and the late 2019/early 2020 carbon monoxide and mold emergencies at the Durham Housing Authority’s McDougald Terrace property.
Learn more about Food for Durham here: https://www.unitedwaytriangle.org/foodfordurham.
For additional information about Food for Durham, contact Angel Brown, United Way’s Manager of Neighborhood Impact, at firstname.lastname@example.org or Michael Davis, Durham County’s Strategic Initiative Manager, at email@example.com.