Connecticut Food Bank and Foodshare announced that the boards of both food banks are in discussions to merge as one statewide organization to more effectively serve people in Connecticut who struggle with food insecurity.
Foodshare Board chair Beth Henry and Connecticut Food Bank past Board chair Wes Higgins have led the process for the two organizations and released a statement regarding the progress of the talks. “We have been engaged in a deliberate and thoughtful process to determine how we can achieve our united mission with our experienced and dedicated staff, our partner agencies, our volunteers, and our donors. We look forward to providing an update early in 2021.”
Mr. Higgins added that the two organizations have a history of collaborative work that made the discussions a logical next step. “We have worked together in the past on issues of advocacy, policy, and service delivery. This is a natural evolution of that partnership.”
Ms. Henry said that Foodshare and Connecticut Food Bank “have cooperated on logistics, including food distribution and statewide fundraising, most recently during the coronavirus pandemic. This conversation is happening because we work well together and we believe strongly we can do even more as a combined team.”
As part of the discussions, a framework for a combined organization is in development. Ms. Henry and Mr. Higgins said that the new Board of Directors will be comprised of members of both existing boards and that Foodshare President & CEO Jason Jakubowski, who has displayed strong leadership in his role as CEO for the past three years would be named President & CEO of the new organization. The new organization will have a new name that will “reflect its statewide nature,” said Ms. Henry. “For the first time in history, Connecticut will have one dynamic statewide network of 700-plus partner agencies including pantries, meal programs, mobile distribution sites, and more.”
Mr. Higgins said that the new organization would continue operations in Bloomfield and Wallingford and that there are no immediate plans to make reductions in staff. “The Board of Directors of the new organization will continually evaluate operations and make subsequent decisions based on what will allow us to effectively distribute high-quality, nutritious food to the most Connecticut residents.”
Connecticut Food Bank: Paul Shipman,firstname.lastname@example.org,203-741-9209
Foodshare: Monica Obrebski,email@example.com, 860-856-4319
About Connecticut Food Bank
Connecticut Food Bank distributes food through a network of 500 partners and programs in Fairfield, Litchfield,
Middlesex, New Haven, New London, and Windham counties, representing 71% of the state’s population and where as many as 400,000 people may be struggling with hunger due to the Coronavirus pandemic, according to recent data from Feeding America. Last year, Connecticut Food Bank distributed food to help provide 23.8 million meals. Visit us on the web at www.ctfoodbank.org, like us on Facebook and follow @CTFoodBank on Twitter and Instagram.
Foodshare is leading an informed, coordinated response to hunger in our community. Foodshare is the Feeding America food bank serving Connecticut’s Hartford and Tolland counties, where 119,000 people struggle with hunger. In partnership with the food industry, donors, community leaders and volunteers, Foodshare works to maximize access to nutritious food and other resources that support food security. Last year, Foodshare distributed nearly 14 million meals worth of food to a network of more than 260 local food pantries, meal programs, and Mobile Foodshare sites. And, because hunger is more than food, Foodshare collaborates with anti-hunger organizations, policy makers, and the broader community to build effective solutions to end hunger.
Foodshare is changing what it means to be a food bank. For more information, visit www.foodshare.org, like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.