The Brown Bag Food Project addresses the immediate need for food with 24 hour turn around availability. The Brown Bag Food Project offers nutritious and well-balanced assortments of both perishable and non-perishable food items, while addressing any specific dietary restrictions of clients.
The Brown Bag Food Project makes sure that every person is treated with dignity and respect.
The Brown Bag Food Project is a local non-profit that seeks to address issues of food insecurity in Wood County, Ohio. Our organization provides individuals with a 5-7 day supply of food and vital hygienic items, as well as pet food and supplies, to help meet their immediate needs, along with a resource guide to connect people to additional community resources for long-term support. At the moment, we can provide a distribution once every 6 months. Our focus is to bridge the gap that many fall into from a lack of available resources and for those that do not qualify for any form of assistance. Out of the 13% of food insecure individuals in Wood County, 48% of those do not qualify for any outside help. These are the community members that need everyone to reach out and lend a hand.
Food insecurity is being unsure where or when you will get your next meal. Food insecurity occurs when a person cuts portion sizes or ignores hunger cues in order to afford to buy food for future meals. A lack of money and a lack of nutritionally adequate, safe foods impact a person’s ability to exist in a secure food environment. Food insecurity and a lack of assistance can affect anyone that is living paycheck to paycheck. Unfortunately, there is often embarrassment and a perceived stigma attached to seeking assistance. Many people are excluded from receiving assistance based upon their earnings.
Food insecurity is a serious problem that affects the entire community. A person that is lacking proper and basic nutrition is often more susceptible to illness and low concentration, and suffers from adverse family and/or social interactions, while children often show delays in academic performance and social interactions, as well as increased behavior problems. These are issues that are seen all around us, in our own community.
The idea for Brown Bag Food Project began in 2013 when our Executive Director, Amy Holland, noticed a glaring lack of immediate resources available to people struggling with food insecurity at her place of employment. Many of these employed individuals found themselves in need of food due to unforeseen circumstances like the loss of a job, unexpected medical expenses, costly car repairs, or a delay in limited social services. To help, Amy began putting together and distributing bags of food to people in need. After operating informally for over two years, with the help of Amy’s friends and family, the Brown Bag Food Project attained non-profit status in 2015. Today, The Brown Bag Food Project has helped thousands of individuals and families in Wood County that are dealing with food insecurity.
The Brown Bag Food Project had a major milestone in November 2016 with the opening of our offices at 115 W. Merry Street, Suite B in Bowling Green. The location expanded storage capabilities and added the element for walk up assistance during office hours. Brown Bag Food Project continues to increase its influence in Wood County with the help of dedicated volunteers, as well as generous donors.
We are funded by donations from individuals and corporations. We are looking for corporate sponsors and individual donors that wish to assist their fellow community members. Food insecurity might not always be obvious but it is all around us: the friendly face at the checkout counter, your next door elderly neighbor, the disabled veteran down the street, a family member, or the child that walked past you on her way to school. These are the faces of hunger in our community. In today’s times, with so many living paycheck to paycheck and working multiple jobs to stay afloat, it only takes one unforeseen emergency for many to fall into food insecurity. We strive to fill that gap and offer our fellow community members a welcomed helping hand. A key component to our organization is that we stress inclusiveness of all people – no judgments.
Donations come in many forms:
- Monetary donations (general)
- Monetary donations (specific) – e.g. rent, hygiene, etc.
- Specific item produced by company (green beans, tomatoes, meat)
- Monthly, bi-monthly, bi-yearly, or yearly food drives
- Matching monetary donations from food drives
- Make Brown Bag your focused charity for the month
- Socially responsible company – company with a heart
- Large social media following, website, newsletter, community events
- Company logo displayed – boost market share