Last year, the Food Depository continued to make smart investments in communities across Cook County as we expanded programs and increased our commitment to distributing quality food. We surpassed one of the benchmarks of our strategic plan by making fresh produce account for one-third of our total distribution. We also fostered new partnerships while exploring innovative opportunities with longtime stakeholders, allowing us to keep administrative costs at just seven percent of the annual budget for another year. This couldn’t have been done without you.
Voices from the Field, our online 2011-2012 Annual Report, features three videos that tell stories of need while highlighting the innovative responses you’ve made possible – Mobile Response, Chicago’s Community Kitchens and SNAP Outreach. Our video about Mobile Response was filmed during a Producemobile distribution in Rogers Park where more than 30 volunteers come together every month to set up tables, unload the Producemobile and pass out fresh fruit and vegetables to their neighbors. The volunteers are Christian, Hindu, Jewish and Muslim; African American, Asian, Caucasian and Hispanic; some are Chicago-born and some are immigrants to the United States; some are in their 30’s and some are in their 60’s. Every one of them gives a few hours of their time each month to help their neighbors receive nutritious food.
The Producemobile in Rogers Park is one of more than 650 Food Depository programs across Cook County that bring people together to fight hunger in their communities. Together, we responded to 5.5 million pantry visits in fiscal year 2011-2012. We are proud of our collective accomplishments, but we are humbled by the need that persists. Overall, 1 in 6 people in our community doesn’t know when or where their next meal will come from.
We thank all of our donors, volunteers, supporters and advocates for their contributions of food, funds, time and their voices this year. We are incredibly grateful for your partnership and we look forward to continuing our work together as we strive to end hunger in our community. On behalf of our network, and the people we serve, thank you for supporting the Greater Chicago Food Depository.
Executive Director and CEO
Greater Chicago Food Depository