Foodshare President's Blog

Foodshare President's Blog

Friday, January 9, 2015

Do you want to end hunger?

Then consider tutoring a child.

Here's one option: United Way Readers

Change a life in an hour! Help a child develop reading and comprehension skills needed to succeed in school and life.

Find out how Oliver learned to read above grade level and is now on track to a successful future, click here. 

Thursday, January 8, 2015

Do you want to end hunger?

Then think about becoming a budget coach and helping a head of household work out a financial plan for the family:

Volunteer Budget Coaching:
Play a critical role in helping a working family create and stick to a budget, pay bills on time and save for the future.

Hear from Tiffani, a certified nursing assistant in Hartford, about her struggle to make ends meet, click here.

Wednesday, January 7, 2015

Do you want to end hunger?

How about volunteering with Foodshare's SNAP Outreach Program?

The Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) is one of the most effective and efficient ways to end hunger in our state. This federal program, formerly known as the Food Stamp Program, currently serves more than 405,000 Connecticut residents, with thousands more applying each month. This necessary benefit gives many individuals the chance to provide nutritious and healthy meals to their families, yet the program is still highly underutilized.

Currently, over 30% of SNAP eligible households in Connecticut are not receiving benefits. If we can increase participation by just 5% the additional amount of food purchased in Connecticut would be more than what Foodshare can distribute in a whole year!

Not to mention, SNAP is also a great way to boost the local economy! Research shows that every $1.00 spent in SNAP benefits results in $1.73 worth of local economic activity. SNAP is federal money being spent in our own community.

Foodshare began a SNAP Outreach program in 2008 with a goal of increasing participation rates by helping those who qualify apply for the benefit. It all began with one full-time staff person and a small group of volunteers. Since that time, the program has grown to include 20 trained volunteers completing 40-70 hours of SNAP outreach every month in the form of pre-screening and application assistance.

Last year, Foodshare volunteers connected 235 households with SNAP, and provided phone referral services to hundreds more. Over the next decade we hope to partner with other Statewide organizations to increase participation in Connecticut from 75% to 95%. A number that is already achieved by many other States.

Tuesday, January 6, 2015

Do you want to end hunger?

You could volunteer with VITA - the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance program - and help a low-income worker avoid paying fees for tax preparation and maybe receive an Earned Income Tax Credit:

Volunteer Income Tax Assistance:
Prepare and file taxes fast and free for working families as a VITA volunteer at a United Way-supported tax site.

Hear why one VITA Site Coordinator in the Windham Region is so passionate about the program, click here.

Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Friday, December 26, 2014

So, what's next for Foodshare?

Foodshare's Board of Directors has implemented the organization's management succession plan, which included naming Christine O'Rourke, Executive Vice President and COO as Interim CEO upon my departure.   Chris has been with Foodshare for 26 years and you can read more about her background here.

The Board has engaged with transition consultants, Raffa, to help guide them through a three-part transition process.  The first phase has already begun - an organizational assessment.  The purpose of the assessment is to think about who we are and where we are going and define what it is we need in our next leader.

When the assessment is done, the actual search will start, probably around February or March.  The goal is to have a new leader in place by the summer of 2015.  And then the third phase of the process, the on-boarding of the new leader begins.

I have complete confidence in the Board of Directors, the senior leadership, and the staff at Foodshare and believe they will find a new leader that will bring the organization to new heights.

I hope we can also count on your continued support as Foodshare moves through this transition!


For updates and more information on the transition, please click here.