March 2019 Roundup

03/31/2019 - 7:00pm
Roundup For Keystone MN Food Share - Sihlouette of state of MN w/ stalks of grain

Minnesota FoodShare March Campaign for Keystone Community Services

The MN FoodShare March Campaign is the largest grassroots food and fund drive in the state, bringing together various community organizations, businesses, and faith communities to help stock nearly 300 food shelves statewide.

The nonprofit began its work in 1982 with a campaign to restock food shelves in the 7-county Twin Cities area. The effort was so successful and the need so evident, the March Campaign became a statewide program just one year later.

In 2018, over $8.1 million dollars and 5.5 million pounds of food were raised – impressive, yet just a temporary dent in the problem.

MN FoodShare envisions a Minnesota where all residents have access to healthy food and no one struggles with food insecurity. The March Campaign is one way to address these issues, and we at the co-op invite you to join their efforts to advocate for long-term solutions to food insecurity and poverty in our communities.

Hampden Park Co-op is one of 16 Cooperating Minnesota Food Co-ops and in 2018 the combined dollar/pound contributions placed the team 2nd overall in the state. We are proud to be (albeit) a small part of this team!

Keystone Community Services

HPC supports Keystone. The nonprofit reaches more than 30,000 people in Ramsey County through a variety of human services such as youth programming, senior services, crisis support and, of course, food shelves and distribution. Keystone operates 3 food shelves and a foodmobile, plus free farmers markets during the growing season. They strive to provide healthy choices and supplemental food sources to empower families to build self-sufficiency and healthy eating habits.

We have been collecting for the Midway Keystone food shelf since 2004 – that's 15 years! Unfortunately, donations are way down… In 2018 we donated 537 total pounds (vs. 1,000+ pounds in many past years). We collected $418 during last year's MN FoodShare March Roundup.

Some stats to know about what happens to your Keystone donations. In 2018:
• 23,000+ people participated in their food programs (including Foodmobile).
• They distributed 2.27 million pounds of food.
• The Midway site distributed 618,896 pounds to 4,647 households.
• The number of households turning to Midway for assistance increased by 23% over 2017.

Some things to know about what to give:
• Donations should be non-perishable & commercially packaged with ingredients labels.
• Non-expired food preferred, but can accept packaged items up to 6 months past date (except for baby food).
• Gluten-free, low-sugar, low-salt & dairy-free items are always appreciated.
• Non-food items for household & personal care are welcome.
• Even the Go-To Metro Transit coupons from Chinook Book.
• Things that don't need cooking are helpful for the homeless so you can never go wrong with peanut butter & jelly, crackers, canned meats, etc.
• And if you like to eat a certain something, someone else will too!

So round up when checking out and/or leave donations of items – and help Keystone clients in need!

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Find out more about MN Food Share and Keystone Community Services.

Midway Keystone is our neighborhood food shelf:
- 1916 University near Prior
- Open daytimes Monday–Friday
- Donations accepted: 9:00–4:00
- Client service: 10:00–11:30 & 1:00–3:30

Posted by Christine DeMars • March 2019