You never know what’s going to happen at NNEMAP Food Pantry. Take this recent customer’s adventure, for example. Kendra (name changed) sent a request for free grocery delivery service right after the New Year. It was January 4th–our first business day of 2021. Pantry Manager Jim Hamberg called Kendra back to confirm the request and set up a delivery time. Business as usual.
The next day, business took an unusual turn. Kendra called Jim back to cancel the delivery request. “I do not have money for rent, so I am probably going to get evicted. I don’t know where we will be, so I don’t know where to tell you to deliver,” she explained.
A year ago, Kendra was a working, single mother of a middle-school aged son. Like many families, they had enough to get by as long as nothing crazy happened. Then the Covid-19 pandemic struck. The first wave of shutdowns left Kendra without a job. After finally finding a new, full-time job that would be sufficient to support her household, she was diagnosed with Covid-19 as part of a final, pre-employment screening. After seeing the positive Covid test, the employer rescinded Kendra’s job offer.
In less than 48 hours, Kendra and her 12-year-old son were going to be out on the street in the dead of winter with no food and no place to go. That was not acceptable. Jim and NNEMAP Food Pantry Executive Director Roy Clark found a nearby organization that would help Kendra pay her rent. A couple of phone calls later, Kendra’s rent was paid and she could stay safely at home.
Crucially, avoiding eviction will keep a blemish off Kendra’s credit rating–a negative mark that could haunt her for years to come. Also, staying in her home meant Kendra’s son would not miss any school time or transfer to a new school. Countless studies have shown that the effects of missed school time or transferring to a different school have a devastating effect on academic achievement. For a middle school student, missing school or being forced to transfer could have catastrophic effects.
Some quick thinking and good listening helped Kendra avoid a disaster–and helped her son stay on track in the classroom.
All in a day’s work.
Say what you will about 2020, but you have to admit it was not uneventful. For a year of pandemic-induced lockdowns and travel restrictions, it was not without its excitement.
NNEMAP Food Pantry experienced a year of accelerated growth and explosive expansion in response to the Covid-19 pandemic. In case you missed it, we….
*Expanded our service territory to include the whole City of Columbus and Franklin County,
*Allowed shoppers to come once a week instead of twice a month,
*Added Thursday afternoon/evening hours so we are now open 6 days a week,
*Introduced a popular grocery delivery service for customers who can’t get out.
As expected given the economic fallout of the pandemic, we were busier than ever distributing food to our friends in the community. By the end of the year we…
*Served 5,137 unique households (up from 3,736 in 2019)
*Served 17,480 unique individuals (11,904 in 2019)
*Fulfilled 18,546 requests for groceries (17,338 in 2019)
*Distributed the equivalent of 605,250 meals (526,731 in 2019).
Thank you to our supporters, including our incredible church network; United Way of Central Ohio; The City of Columbus Department of Development; The Columbus Foundation; and hundreds of individual donors who gave what they could for those who had nothing to spare.
Thank you for helping us navigate a most unusual year. 2021 is off and running already. We are looking forward to running this race with you again!
We are always welcoming new partners to our community. Click a link below to learn how you can get involved today!
What can you get at NNEMAP Food Pantry? Well, food of course. But you can also get a whole lot more. As a neighborhood hub of food-related activity, we are in position to help in more ways than just one. So we work hard to connect customers to other useful resources when they are here.
For customers who need help with….
-Housing issues or homelessness
-Healthcare or health insurance
-Unemployment or low-wage jobs
-Food stamps/SNAP benefits
-Rent assistance or utility payments
….we can refer you to a partner who can help. Right now a lot of people do not know where to turn. You can turn to NNEMAP Food Pantry for free groceries–and we can point you in the right direction for all your other needs. Just let us know how we can help!
How can YOU help? Any of these three easy ways:
VOLUNTEER: Click the link at left to learn how!
DONATE: There are many ways to give–and every dollar makes a difference!
ADVOCATE: Follow us on Facebook. Share our story with friends–together we can make change happen!
THANK YOU FOR YOUR SUPPORT!!!
For the past 10 years, November has been a big fundraising month for NNEMAP Food Pantry. Our annual “Harmony for Hunger” concert brings together hundreds of volunteers, donors, church partners and patrons for a night of great music. The concert raises between $10-$15,000 for NNEMAP.
This year’s event was cancelled–but you can still get the gift of music this Thanksgiving season. NNEMAP Food Pantry and Jazz Arts Group are teaming up to make it happen. We’re just asking for a little help.
DONATE $50 and we will send you a copy of “Come Together”–a compilation of classics from all eras performed by the incomparable Columbus Jazz Orchestra. As an extra bonus, the first 10 donors will get a copy signed by CJO Conductor Byron Stripling!
DONATE $250 and you get to participate in a special virtual conversation with Byron (first 10 donors at this level only). Got a question about the band? One of the songs on the CD? Curious about the recording session? Ask Byron in this intimate forum!
Zaftig Brewing Company is teaming up with NNEMAP Food Pantry! The local craft beer artisans are donating ALL of the “round-up” cash collected at their locations now through the end of the year! Big beers…small change…HUGE impact!!!
NNEMAP Food Pantry distributed the equivalent of about 526,000 meals in 2019 (total through October 15 of this year: 447,000)
NNEMAP’s total cost per meal in 2019 was about 44 cents.
A cash-register round-up, on average, comes out to about 50 cents.
Approximate number of cash-register round ups needed to fund NNEMAP Food Pantry for 1 year: a lot!
Our work is clear: Go to Zaftig Brewing Company and round up at the register!
Huge thanks to Zaftig Brewing Company for this opportunity!
VISIT ZAFTIG AT EITHER ONE OF ITS TWO CONVENIENT LOCATIONS:
Worthington: 7020-A Huntley Road / Columbus, OH 43229
Italian Village: 119 East 5th Avenue / Columbus, OH 43201