The goal of the South County Food Pantry is to provide food for families who are in need. Our role in the “need network” is gathering, organizing and distributing food to the hungry in the Venice, Nokomis, Laurel, and Osprey areas. The pantry has over one hundred volunteers, none of whom receives any compensation nor are any reimbursed for incidental expenses such as automobile usage. We are a nonprofit, 501c3 organization, and we do not receive any government funding. We average 400 visits per month which feeds about 1200 people including 250 children. Our clients visit us once per month and receive about 10 days’ worth of food amounting to approximately $45 or more depending on the size of the family.
One of our main goals is to provide support for families who need help for a short time only. We offer food until they can improve their economic situation. This is true for a high percentage of our clients. 35% of our families are dependent on our services for less than a year. Senior citizens who are on a limited budget make up 10% of our clients. These are folks who are 70 years old and older. Homeless individuals make up 8% of our clients. Others include single parent families, those who do not have work, and the disabled.
We are open every weekday from 9:00 AM to 12:00 PM. In addition to providing food we also provide a certain amount of social interaction for our clients. Especially the elderly who enjoy talking with our volunteers. Our services are on a personal and very humanistic basis, and our volunteers interact with our clients one to one. We feel this makes us unique in our approach.
Our donations come from churches, community organizations, and individuals in the Venice area. We have over 150 such sources for our food. For tax purposes a value is assigned to the food that we receive. We give out approximately $18,000 worth of food per month or $216,000 per year.
Our Board of Directors
|Vice President||Ken Collins|
|Stocking/Donations Coordinator||Linda Fraser|
|Volunteer Coordinator||Lucy Carlson|
|Finance Chair||Therese Ballard|
|Community Outreach||Lise Mills|