December 2021: The Latest from PORCH
- Warning: These photos will make your mouth water! Maria, a Food for Families participant, shared with us that she made chicken tinga with lettuce, cheese, cream, and chicken broth with rice using PORCH ingredients. Her children reported that our fruit was delicious last month. Maria added that we mean a lot to her – thank you, Maria! You mean so much to us!
- Big announcement! PORCH Chapel Hill-Carrboro, along with nine other organizations, received the GSK IMPACT Award for building a healthier Triangle region. We are so proud and thankful! Get all the details here.
As our own Debbie Horwitz said about the award: “We will put these funds to good use to grow our programs, expand and improve our partnerships to increase access to needed services, develop a staff with an eye toward longterm sustainability, and enrich our advocacy arm to address the systemic problems that lead to poverty and food insecurity. In short, we will be able to make a greater impact during this critical time of increased need as we recover from the pandemic.”
- Our thanks to our partners at The Produce Box for raising funds for PORCH Chapel Hill-Carrboro through the month of December. When a member orders a produce box this month, they can also “buy” a box of produce for PORCH. We will then be able to get a credit for produce from The Produce Box for the families in our programs. Learn more at theproducebox.com.
- One of our Neighborhood Coordinators, Rachel Victoria Mills, and her friend/neighbor Laurie Thorp came up with these tips to send to neighbors as the year winds down.
1. Find a grocery bag or box. Each day this month, put in one can, one box, or one bag of nonperishable food (if they are holiday foods, so much the merrier, though daily basics are what we always need).
2. Find a jar or plastic food container. Each day this month, put into it any loose change you find in purses, pockets, drawers, laundry, etc. Be sure to mark your name on the container, so PORCH can thank you properly. We are all about thanks!
Such great ideas!
- Kathleen Shapley-Quinn, a longtime dedicated PORCH volunteer, generously donated 1,125 healthy, delicious frozen Good Bowls meals last month. With every meal, Good Bowls works to promote food equity in the community and support the North Carolina food system. Find out more at eatgoodbowls.com.
- This month, Lydia Lavelle steps down as mayor of Carrboro after eight years at the helm, the past two while dealing with all of the challenges of the pandemic. She has served our community so well!
Mayor Lavelle has been a strong and consistent champion of PORCH since our start. Our co-founder Susan Romaine remembers her bicycling over to Susan’s garage in Lake Hogan Farms shortly after we were founded and helping with the sorting and packing of cans and boxes. Over the years, the mayor declared a PORCH Day in Carrboro and recognized the 10th anniversary of our hunger relief effort through a mayoral proclamation. This video with Mayor Lavelle was filmed several years ago and really captures her love of PORCH. We are extremely grateful for her leadership and support!
- Eva shared this photo of “Ma’s chicken soup,” prepared with the bounty of food PORCH provided last month. Comfort in a bowl!
- Wanda Gary helps PORCH in many ways – as an on-site volunteer during food distributions and in her work at Pinnacle, our bank. Thank you for all you do, Wanda!
- Since the holiday season is very much in full swing, we want to remind you that you can always donate to PORCH in someone’s honor! They will be touched by this meaningful gesture, and you will love the ease of this form of gift giving. Just check the box for “I would like to dedicate this donation.” We will send the honoree a letter acknowledging your generous contribution. https://chapelhill.porchcommunities.org/donate
- Neighborhood Coordinator Betty Davis read about PORCH in Redbook magazine over 10 years ago and learned about something happening right in her own backyard! She went to the website and soaked up even more information. She showed up one Monday morning for a food sort and became a Neighborhood Coordinator the very next month. And we are so glad she did! On our blog, you can read more about Betty and get her thoughts on our mission.
Neighborhood Coordinators like Betty organize the monthly food collections for our active neighborhoods or streets. They are responsible for spreading the word about the designated day for the monthly food drives, picking up donations from neighborhood porches, and getting the nonperishable bags of food to a central location. Interested in finding out more about the role of Neighborhood Coordinator? Get in touch with us! firstname.lastname@example.org
- We’re hiring! PORCH Chapel Hill-Carrboro is in need of a full-time program manager to manage, maintain, and develop all aspects of our programs including the fresh Food for Families program, the Food for Pantries program, and the Food for Schools snack program that provide hunger relief to our community in Chapel Hill and Carrboro. Learn more.
- Coronis Health held a food drive and collected a carload full of food for PORCH. Buddy the Elf even made an appearance! Thank you, team, for your incredible work.
- We partner with Extraordinary Ventures to use their event space to sort and pack all of our non-perishable food donations. Pictured here are Paige and Brandon, from Extraordinary Ventures, and our non-perishable packing and sorting team leaders, Kate and Carol!
- Jim Evans provides valuable service to PORCH as our treasurer, but he also volunteers every month delivering fresh food to families without transportation. Here he is with 100 gallons of milk at our distribution in November. Thanks for your service, Jim!
- One of our longtime volunteers, Michael Smith, is moving to Greensboro. We miss him already! He recently told us: “PORCH has been one of the rich points in my life. Really.” Thank you for all you have done in service to your community, Michael! Best wishes as you embark on this new chapter.