A brief overview of the Greater Cleveland Food Bank.
A group of civic-minded individuals joined together to create the Cleveland Foodbank, an innovative initiative to confront the critical issue of hunger in our community.
Founders included members of the food industry, anti-food waste advocates, and individuals concerned with fighting hunger.
The Cleveland Foodbank was incorporated to serve as a resource for both food industry donors and local charities feeding the hungry. The Foodbank served as a single clearinghouse that could solicit, collect, sort, and distribute food in a more efficient manner.
In its first year, the organization distributed more than 400,000 pounds of food to 100 local partner agencies.
First Food DistributionMarch 8 — The Food Bank provided 3 products to 15 agencies. Distributed more than 400,000 lbs. to 80 agencies in the first year.
New BuildingOpened new building on E. 27th Street on November 19.
Hunger Study ReleasedReleased groundbreaking Hunger Study, conducted nationally by America’s Second Harvest (now known as Feeding America). It provided a comprehensive understanding of the people who receive assistance through the food bank network, the personal and economic circumstances of their households, and the response of the partner agencies that provide assistance to those in need.
Food Rescue of Northeast Ohio
The Foodbank merged with Food Rescue of Northeast Ohio, a longtime ally and nonprofit food distributor.
Food Rescue of Northeast Ohio has primarily focus on providing fresh, frozen, and prepared food while the Foodbank had focused on nonperishable food. With the merger, the Foodbank is now able to provide local hunger centers with access to a wider variety of nutritious food for their clients.
Merger with GCCH
The Cleveland Foodbank merged with the Greater Cleveland Committee on Hunger, the organization that ran the Harvest for Hunger food and funds drive.
The 21-county Harvest for Hunger campaign is now coordinated from under the Foodbank roof.
Our Big Move
The Cleveland Foodbank moved to a new 128,000 square foot facility, complete with a kitchen, warehouse space, cooling facilities, and repack area.
The new facility also included space to house our entire staff, including our program agency and benefit outreach teams. Programs operating out of five different facilities were moved under one roof!
Awarded National Food Bank of the Year
The Children's Nutrition Initiative launches at the Foodbank, which includes programs like the Kid's Cafe and Backpacks for Kids.
Named "Foodbank of the Year" by America's Second Harvest, now known as Feeding America.
The Mobile Pantry Program
The Mobile Pantry Program is established, bringing healthy, perishable food directly to underserved communities in Northeast Ohio.
First Summer Feeding
The Summer Food Service program begins at the Foodbank. More than 128,000 meals were served at 32 locations to school age children in low-income areas, when school was out and children needed nutritious food most.
Help Center Opens
Our Help Center opened its doors to assist clients over the phone with filling out SNAP applications and additional benefits, as well as refer them to emergency food in their neighborhood.
The Cleveland Foodbank, which had grown since 1979 to serve more than 700 agencies in six Northeast Ohio counties, changed its name to reflect the expanse of its service area.
The Greater Cleveland Food Bank, as the organization is now known, continues to operate in Ashland, Ashtabula, Cuyahoga, Geauga, Lake, and Richland Counties.
The Cargill Cold Storage Center
The Cargill Cold Storage Center opens to more than double our cold storage capacity to 22,000 square feet to store fresh fruits, vegetables, and other perishable foods.
Launch of Senior Markets
The Food Bank launches its first Senior Markets, which provide nutritious meals to help seniors live healthier and more nourished lives in their own homes. Meals, prepared in our kitchen, are delivered to community centers or picked up by partners for delivery to homebound seniors on a daily basis.
The Greater Cleveland Food Bank continues to provide nutritious food to our service area every day. The Food Bank has grown to serve more than 940 partner agencies.
Through various efforts, the Food Bank made possible more than 55 million nutritious meals to hungry individuals.
New Strategic Plan
The Food Bank’s Board approved a new three-year strategic plan. In this new plan, the Food Bank will reach even more individuals, families, and seniors in need of our help while also beginning to measure our work in new ways to improve client services, access to food resources and outcomes.
The COVID-19 pandemic hit! The Food Bank served more than 404,000 individuals. More than 1/3 of the clients served received emergency food assistance for the first time.
The Food Bank broke ground on our Partner Distribution Hub @ Coit Road. This new facility will further expand our operations and efficiencies allowing us to serve tens of thousands of people in Northeast Ohio.
The Food Bank opens a new 198,000 sq. ft. Partner Distribution Hub.