Greater Lansing Food Bank supplies approximately 150 service agencies – pantries and mobile food distribution sites in seven counties – with meals since the pandemic. SNAP benefits have expired. They’ve seen an upsurge in clientele.
Palumbo attributes this spike in food costs and government regulation to both factors. She notes that SNAP recipients struggle to make ends meet after extra benefits are unavailable.
Feeding the hungry
The Greater Lansing Food Bank (GLFB) strives to mobilize community resources to reduce hunger in the seven-county area service area through warehouse and distribution center activities, mobile food distributions, partner agencies, and specialized programs such as its Garden Project, which offers land, how-to education classes, free seeds/plants/tool lending/networking hub access so all community members may grow their healthy food sources.
Ingham County offers many food banks, soup kitchens, and pantries that distribute groceries and meals daily to those in need. Additionally, these centers provide diapers, personal hygiene products, baby formula, and Ensure for seniors. Some even offer pet food, furniture, or household items as needed for those in need.
Ingham County residents can become involved with the Greater Lansing Food Bank by holding food drives, volunteering, and donating. Food drives have helped the GLFB raise over $1 Million since 2022! Another great way to help is participating in the SNAP double-up food program, which allows eligible users to double up their dollars at participating farmers’ markets; many grocery stores in Ingham County are already joining this effort so customers can easily make an impactful difference!
At this season of giving, it is essential to remember that hunger does not take a holiday break. Food insecurity remains an ongoing problem in Michigan communities like Clare, Eaton, Clinton Gratiot Isabella, and Ingham counties and is served by The Greater Lansing Food Bank (GLFB), offering compassionate assistance through food pantries, member agencies, community gardens, and mobile distribution services.
Volunteers are an integral part of the GLFB’s operations, performing over 85 assignments across our organization and helping distribute over seven million meals annually. Volunteers may choose among roles like sorting food, helping with mobile food distribution, or working directly with clients in community gardens or food kitchens.
GLFB provides home gardening opportunities to help community members grow fresh, nutritious food at home. This program provides access to land, education on developing your nutrition, and access to free seeds and plants – plus tool lending, tool lending hubs, networking hubs, and much more! Currently, the GLFB supports over 90 community gardens and 400 home gardeners throughout their service area.
Individuals, organizations, and clubs can also support the Greater Lansing Food Bank through virtual food drives. Anyone from individuals to clubs and organizations can host virtual food drives by visiting its website – each dollar raised provides three meals! In partnership with White Law PLLC during Super Bowl weekend, this effort helped raise money for 140 food pantries, shelters, and kitchens throughout Michigan.
Since 1981, Greater Lansing Food Bank (GLFB) has mobilized the community to combat hunger. They collect donations from neighbors, retailers, the USDA, and purchased goods, then distribute them through 140 community partners across their seven county service area. Each year, they serve tens of thousands of individuals, including children and seniors, and provide meals to working poor individuals who don’t make enough to cover housing, transportation, and food expenses.
GLFB is ensuring they can continue feeding their neighbors during the coronavirus pandemic. They are increasing food distribution efforts by hosting monthly mobile food distribution events in the Lansing metro area using a drive-thru model; staff and volunteers will ask people to remain in their vehicles while selecting items needed. In addition, “backpack food programs,” which supply students with weekend and school break food supplies, will continue as part of GLFB’s services.
This organization also operates a community garden project, offering land access, how-to education, free seeds and plants, tool lending, networking hub access, and tool lending so all community members have the resources to grow their healthy food. They also offer home delivery for neighbors with mobility issues, Weekend Kits as care packages for unhoused families, and mobile food pantry services – everything needed for sustainable food production!
Making a difference
Since 1981, Greater Lansing Food Bank (GLFB) has worked to end hunger by mobilizing community resources. They store millions of pounds of nutritious food they distribute through an expansive network of 140 member agencies (food pantries, community kitchens, shelters) and programs like mobile food pantries, Weekend Kits for Children, and Care Kits for unhoused neighbors. They also offer garden programs that provide access to land and education on growing your food, free seeds and plants, tool lending, and networking hubs so all members of their community can increase their food production.
Rising food costs have left families across mid-Michigan turning to food banks for assistance, particularly as government benefits to cover food are reduced; as a result, 26% more families received grants from Greater Lansing Food Bank during 2017 compared to 2016.
Food delivery is possible for hungry people only with the support of generous donors and volunteers. You can help by hosting a food drive, donating canned or boxed goods, making a financial donation, crowdfunding funds virtual gifts through crowdfunding platforms, or making virtual donations yourself; each dollar donated provides three meals to those in need! For more information, visit their website or follow them on Facebook for updates and volunteer opportunities.