Times Record Community Matters: Bath Area Food Bank
Community Matters is a monthly series highlighting the great work local nonprofits are doing in our area. Proudly supported by Priority Real Estate Group, Rusty Lantern Market and M W Sewall
This month’s message from Bath Area Food Bank
The Bath Area Food Bank is fortunate to have such a great platform to be able to share what we have accomplished over the last year.
2020 was a difficult year for all of us. Sadly, we were not able to hold any of our annual food drives or fundraisers. We are thankful to our community members and business donors who chose to donate and support us over the challenging year. We are crossing our fingers and still hoping to hold our annual Turkey Trot on Thanksgiving morning. The final decision will be made in early November. We received a very generous donation from Good Shephard Food Bank. Thanks to those funds, we have purchased a walk-in cooler/freezer! This is a game changer for us!
2021 started off with a ‘bang’. We were still providing food for 450 families per month (pre COVID we were providing food for under 200 families per month). The City of Bath permitted us to put up a sturdy carport (i.e. it can handle our Maine winters!!). This carport was donated by the Bath Rotary, and because of this enclosure, we offer 1000’s of pounds of produce, bread, baked goods and miscellaneous items to all of our families twice a week during lunch time on Tuesdays and Thursday, including Tuesday night. This generous donation made it possible to carry on our mission to provide families with food. Without it we could NOT have been as successful.
The Food Pantry is open from 4-6pm on Tuesdays, and 12-2pm on Thursdays. We are still providing low personal contact in enclosed spaces – doing our part to keep our community safe. We ask that when a client arrives, please stay in your car. Julie Upham, or Lisha Wentworth, our weekly parking lot greeters, will come to you and give you the needed paperwork to request your food choices.
We offer each guest a ‘shopping list’ of items. They can choose, dairy items, frozen meats, frozen meals, household items and much more. We add these items to a ‘premade’ box of nonperishable items. Food insecure families are invited to visit our food bank 2 times a month, or as needed.
The Soup Kitchen is serving homemade meals every Tuesday and Thursday 12-1:30pm. Norma Elwell has been creating an outstanding variety of fabulous meals for nearly 5 years now. She offers each guest a hot ‘to go’ meal, and a frozen meal to eat at another time. Similar to the increase in the Food Pantry we have experienced, we are sending out more meals than we have in the past. Everyone is eligible for our noon meals, no questions asked. Individuals are also allowed to stop by and shop in the carport when they arrive – picking up bread, produce, baked goods and miscellaneous items. Kimberly Becker joins us every Thursday 12-2pm to distribute personal care products to anyone in need.
Due to our present health crisis, we are still limiting volunteers. We have a few regular volunteers at each shift. A HUGE THANK YOU goes to Apple Smith, Maddie Malcom, Owen and Helen Hill, Liza Reno, Joel Austin, Lisha Wentworth, and Julie Upham, for volunteering every week making sure our families get their food. Thanks to Callie Wells and Tiffany Wong for going thru 100’s of pounds of fresh produce and bread each morning and stocking the food in the carport. Kimberly, the Bath Area Food Bank director has a new assistant, Taylor Lawriston. She brings a new fresh perspective and is a welcome addition to our team. Sarah Matzke and John Starbird are our Shaws/Hannaford drivers…they are amazing and make sure things are put away in a timely fashion.
For anyone who would like to help and support us please make an online donation at bathfoodbank.org or send a check to the Bath Area Food Bank, PO Box 65, Bath Maine You can follow us on Facebook or Instagram to get the most current information. You may reach out to our director, Kimberly Gates at firstname.lastname@example.org with any questions or concerns.
Nonperishable food donations are accepted 24/7 at our 807 Middle Street location. Press the button to the left of our double glass doors, the door will open and there is a donation bin inside our lobby. We only accept NON PERISISHABLE FOOD that is not outdated in this donation bin.