Announcing the Kristof Impact Initiative Grant Recipients!
When the COVID-19 pandemic swept over the United States this March, hunger levels skyrocketed as millions lost their jobs and experienced economic instability. FareStart and its Catalyst Kitchens members closed their catering and retail businesses and transformed their kitchens to provide for the ever-increasing demand for emergency meals. With the existing infrastructure in place for community meal production, many poured their resources into these efforts, pulling displaced staff members from business operations and some members hiring graduates to supplement the demand.
Our network has observed a 117% increase in community meals production over last year. This includes meals delivered to shelters, housing facilities, senior centers, and meals and/or pantry items available for pickup for those in need. Catalyst Kitchens members have risen to the occasion by increasing fundraising efforts and reallocating resources to meet this need. Based on current trends, we expect the demand for community meals to only increase in the coming months, calling into question the sustainability of current operations based on current funding and resources.
Our job at Catalyst Kitchens by FareStart is to serve our members through resources, events, learning opportunities, and funding opportunities. In April we had the honor of being recognized by the Nicholas Kristof C-19 Impact Initiative, a global fundraising effort to support organizations working around the clock to fight COVID-19 and save lives. As one of the five organizations featured for combatting the negative impacts of the C-19 pandemic, we raised over $1 million dollars for our Catalyst Kitchens members’ hunger relief efforts.
We are excited to announce that we are regranting these funds to 36 member organizations to support their hunger relief efforts. To help achieve greatest impact, we have selected members who have increased production to serve over 1,000 meals per week to their community in response to the COVID-19 crisis.
These funds will support increasing meal production, higher labor costs and new equipment for production like delivery vans and kitchen appliances. A new refrigerated van for Phoenix-based UMOM Day Center could double weekly meal production from 1,200 to 2,500 meals delivered straight to their recipients. Second Helpings in Indianapolis will use the funding to purchase needed to-go containers for meals and supplement their food recovery efforts to cover extra food costs. With funds for a new walk-in cooler to store additional refrigerated goods, Providence in Winston-Salem can continue serving meals to medically frail and homebound seniors in North Carolina. Their kitchen is providing meals to a local hospital who’s funding has run out, with this grant they will cover the costs of production to continue feeding patients.
This crisis has called into question basic needs such as food security for millions of Americans. Our members are fighting to defend these rights for their communities across the country. We applaud their work and are grateful to the Kristof Impact Initiative, Focusing Philanthropy, and the generosity of New York Times readers for supporting our network’s daily efforts to feed those most affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.
Some words from our members:
“I am so honored to be among the recipients and furthermore, THRILLED to be a part of the earth-shattering work the entire CK network is achieving during the pandemic. In a world full of chaos, CK provides a solid foundation of support. I can't wait to share this news with our team!” - UMOM
“On behalf of the San Antonio Food Bank, we are truly grateful for your support so that we may continue providing a direct line of defense against food insecurity. Thank you for fighting to end hunger and feed hope for families in the surrounding community.” – San Antonio Food Bank
WOW! You just made my day!!! Thank you so much. We are thrilled to be selected for this regranting opportunity and it will make an huge impact in our ability to sustain our meal production over the next six months. On behalf of all of Kitchens for Good- thank you.” – Kitchens for Good
“This is so exciting! We were just talking about some projects we wanted to do for our meal program participants this summer and this will help us make those visions a reality. We so appreciate the support from the Catalyst team!” – Community Kitchen Southern AZ
“Kitchen of Grace is truly grateful for this opportunity and your support as we continue to feed our community who has been severely affected by this pandemic. We could not continue this much needed work without your support.” – Kitchen of Grace
Catalyst Kitchens Member recipients:
Appetite for Change, Inc.
Bread Line Inc.
Catholic Charities of Twin Cities
Chester County Food Bank
Community Food Bank of Southern Arizona
Community Kitchen Pittsburgh
DC Central Kitchen
Episcopal Community Services of San Francisco
First Baptist Church of Abilene
Food Education Fund
Homeward Bound of Marin
Hot Bread Kitchen
Kitchen of Grace
Kitchens for Good
Knox Area Rescue Ministries, Inc.
Life's Kitchen, Inc.
Manna on Main Street
San Antonio Food Bank
Santa Fe YouthWorks
St. Matthew's House, Inc.
Stone Soup PDX
The Light House Bistro
Trenton Area Soup Kitchen
UMOM New Day Centers
Williamsburg Area Meals on Wheels