August 2023: The Latest from PORCH
- In July, our volunteers packed 430 bags of non-perishable food for our Food for Families participants. Each of our 559 families also took home two dozen eggs, a gallon of milk, a large box of fresh produce from Produce Box, extra fresh vegetables donated by Wildflower Lane Farm, peaches from Farmer Foodshare, and a grocery store gift card. Our participants who are refugees from Burma also received beautiful, locally grown traditional Asian vegetables, thanks to Transplanting Traditions Community Farm.
- Want to host a food drive for PORCH as summer winds down? It’s pretty easy! Find a designated tub/bin/basket, and set up your food drive collection site. Choose a high-traffic location, whether that’s your front porch, your workplace, your neighborhood clubhouse, or your gym. Our online, editable flyer can help you promote your food drive. Add your food drive dates, drop-off instructions, and contact information. When your food drive ends, you can drop the donated food off at Extraordinary Ventures (200 S. Elliott Road) during our two sort days per month, which you can find listed on our homepage. There’s no need to sort the donations before you deliver them. If you can’t make it to Extraordinary Ventures to drop off the food, reach out to us at firstname.lastname@example.org to set up alternate arrangements. Learn more.
- Through PORCH Cooks, we provide recipes and nutrition information each month to the more than 550 families in our Food for Families program. Every new family also receives a beautiful cookbook, “Good and Cheap: Eat Well on $4/Day,” which is available in English and Spanish. The cookbook has glossy photos of all kinds of healthy recipes for those on a budget. We want families to utilize all the fresh produce we provide – the vast majority of families report that PORCH food allows them to provide healthier meals, and these recipes foster that mission! Recipes are also a fun way to engage children in the cooking process and create family conversations around healthy eating habits. We work with a dietitian, Katie Clarke, who creates professional materials for us to share every month with our program participants. With accessibility in mind, we also translate them to Spanish.
- We are excited to announce that Linda Martinez-Cervantes – one of the social workers at Chapel Hill High School – has joined the PORCH Chapel Hill-Carrboro board of directors! “I really like the connection PORCH has to community, and I like that it partners with the school system,” she says. “People inside the schools really see which kids or families really need extra resources. That’s an awesome way of connecting. Adolescents can’t grow if they don’t even have the basic necessities.” Learn more about Linda on our blog.
- The Chapel Hill-Carrboro City Schools food drive was a huge success, resulting in 75 bags of non-perishable food for PORCH! A huge thank you to the district administrators who volunteered to bring the food that was collected at their schools to Phoenix Academy and help sort it all; the Public School Foundation and CHCCS for organizing; and Phoenix Academy administrators Jon Dixon and Ryan Kulikowski for allowing us to use their common area to receive and sort the food. And of course, thank you to every person who donated!
- Robin Lin has joined PORCH as the new part-time program manager. Robin is primarily responsible for procurement of food and other resources, distribution to our participants, and our Food for Schools program. Robin has been deeply involved in the Chapel Hill-Carrboro community since 2005 both as a small business owner and also as a volunteer in the Chapel Hill-Carrboro school district. Robin’s family has been volunteering with PORCH for years, and she is committed to PORCH’s mission and continuing the relationships that have been developed.Robin enjoys the very special moments she has with her husband and her two daughters. She loves a good cup of coffee, cooking, traveling, and kayaking.
- WCHL and Chapelboro.com‘s Aaron Keck talked to our new executive director Erin Riney about her professional background, our new strategic plan, and PORCH Chapel Hill-Carrboro recently passing the $6 million milestone. We’ve distributed $6 million in hunger relief to community members since our founding in 2010.Thank you to all of our volunteers, donors, and community supporters for making this possible! Have a listen!