the bite: Latest Posts

2020 Foresight! Microsoft in action at Loudoun Hunger Relief, #Neighbors@LHR

What a start to 2020! The play on words is a little tired by mid-January, but we’ll go with it anyway.  A corporation with a vision for thriving communities has embraced Loudoun Hunger Relief’s vision for a community in which everyone has access to adequate, nutritious food. We see only good things to come.

Microsoft, about to be our new neighbor, a stone’s throw from the pantry at Compass Creek, has provided a $10,000 gift to Loudoun Hunger Relief (LHR). The gift will be used to provide chicken for families in need throughout the first several weeks of 2020 and to purchase some much needed new warehouse equipment.

At LHR, much of the food we stock is donated to us by our amazing grocery partners, farm and farmer’s market partners, and private and corporate food drive donors. But high value, perishable items like milk, eggs and chicken are not as available through the donation process. This gift from Microsoft will allow us to purchase chicken, a universal protein, for at least a month. The mid-winter, post-holiday months are our leanest time for food donations, and it will be wonderful to be able to offer the hard working families who must come to us for food a chicken option during this time. We will serve approximately 300 families a week all through the winter months, and chicken will be a fabulous addition to a healthful diet for those families.

Warehouse equipment is not glamorous. We’re especially grateful to Microsoft for seeing the need for functioning equipment in our logistics operations. At LHR, we move about 1.6 million pounds of food per year through our 4500 square foot facility.  It takes teamwork and good equipment to do that efficiently. Our warehouse staff and volunteers are looking forward to having new food hampers that will make sorting incoming food-drive items, storing bulky boxes, and moving stock around the warehouse much easier. As a bonus, the new hampers are much more easily cleaned than the obsolete ones, saving time and effort on the cleaning process.

We are thankful to Microsoft for partnering with us to help those in need in Loudoun. Our new neighbor provided a gift that will help so many in our community have enough to eat. There is no vision more basic than that.

 

Happy First Monday of a New Decade!

It’s the first Monday of 2020, and we are so glad to be starting the new year well. Today, truckloads of donations came in from some of our 23 grocery store partners in Loudoun. Today, more than a dozen volunteers drove, sorted, stocked, served our families and answered phones. Today, the shelves are full and the refrigerators and freezers are stocked.

Throughout 2020, we will ask for your help when we need it because we know you will respond with the same generosity as on this first Monday.

So thank you for your gifts, your time and your support.

We are filled with hope and gratitude for this new year and new decade.

It’s the most wonderful time of the data:text/mce-internal,content,%3Cimg%20class%3D%22aligncenter%20size-medium%20wp-image-3334%22%20src%3D%22https%3A//www.loudounhunger.org/wp-content/uploads/2019/12/2019-visit-from-Santa-225×300.jpg%22%20alt%3D%22%22%20width%3D%22225%22%20height%3D%22300%22%20/%3Eyear….

As 2019 draws to a close, Loudoun Hunger Relief is so grateful. For nearly 30 years, we have been the conduit between generous people in our wonderful Loudoun community and our neighbors in need of help.

We learn something every day about the limitless goodness of people. Our donors provide for those in need–those they do not even know–with open hearts. Our volunteers provide hands-on service with humble hearts and gentleness.  At LHR, we have the privilege of seeing all that generosity act in the lives of those we serve.

We hear about the family who has lost everything and is rebuilding. We hear about tragic accidents, desperate illnesses, job losses, bad luck, and everything in between. But we also see the striving, the effort to make better lives for treasured children, the hard work and the gratitude.

LHR is grateful to everyone who walks in our door, whether to give or to receive. And we wish everyone the joys of this season, and the best of the new year.

 

We’re Rolling! Ribbon Cutting for Mobile Market Tomorrow, 10/30/19 at 4pm

Major Funders:
The Claude Moore Charitable Foundation
Dulles Greenway Drive for Charity
Funded in part by Department of Housing and Urban Development Community Development Block Grant funds administered by the Loudoun County Department of Family Services.
100WomenStrong
Sterling Women Giving Circle
Individual, Family and Corporate Donors from our generous community–Donors like you!

Are you ready for Thanksgiving? Here’s how to get in the spirit

Wait, What????? But it’s true. Thanksgiving is coming in a little over a month from now, and Loudoun Hunger is getting ready.

Our Thanksgiving Dinner Bag project is a wonderful way for small groups, families and individuals to provide food in a very personal way to a family in need. Follow this link for all the details on how to participate.

2019 Thanksgiving Flyer

The Big Green Produce Machine

Last summer, Loudoun Hunger had a dream. We had expanded our produce program to accept more and more from our grocery store partners, our farmer’s markets, and our farm partners. We had such healthy abundance! We were able to supply fresh produce directly to the families we serve in the pantry, PLUS we were networking with partners in the Loudoun Food Providers Network and other partner direct service agencies to get produce in the hands of families in Loudoun who don’t or can’t come to the pantry.The program was great, but needed to be better. We had a dream of an expanded partner distribution program that could reach even more people in need. We needed WAY more temperature controlled produce storage space, and we needed bins and containers specifically designed to transport various types of produce, particularly delicate tomatoes.

So we told the Dominion Foundation about our dream, and they saw the vision too. They funded the Produce Hub project and we were able to purchase a used freight container and convert it to a temperature controlled produce storage locker. We got the transport containers we needed too. Now our operation runs far more smoothly, and we are able to preserve the fresh produce appropriately until our partner distribution agencies can pick it up for use by their clients.

The Produce Hub has made an enormous difference to our partner agencies this summer. One of our favorite programs continues to be the CSA style produce bags we put together for diabetic patients of the Loudoun Free Clinic. The Free Clinic is thrilled to have 60-75 bags of produce each week, which they “prescribe” to their diabetic patients along with recipes for produce rich, low-glycemic dishes. This food, which comes to us from our farm and farmer’s market partners and is staged in our produce hub freight container (in the back parking lot if you haven’t seen it), is becoming a vital part of the Free Clinic’s diabetes management protocol. The hub is in operation for the length of the growing season, from about April to October.

Thanks to our produce donors, our distribution partners, and the Dominion Foundation!

LHR Partner Corner: Loudoun County Elections and Voter Registration

Fun Fact: Guess who has offices right next door to the pantry? That’s right! The Loudoun County Elections and Voter Registration Office. We asked our next door neighbor to give us the scoop on elections in Loudoun, and they were kind enough to contribute this guest blog post. If you aren’t registered for the Nov. election, get that done by Oct. 15!

The Loudoun County Office of Elections works year-round to ensure that citizens of our beautiful county have a safe and pleasurable voting experience with the utmost integrity, transparent reporting and accuracy.
Continue reading “LHR Partner Corner: Loudoun County Elections and Voter Registration”