May 3, 2017

Volunteer Spotlight: Florida Orlando Mission Group

Author: Mindy Ortiz

Florida Orlando Mission group volunteersOver the past 15 months, we’ve had a new group of familiar faces around the food bank.

In 2015, we were approached by the Florida Orlando Mission group to form a partnership between the food bank and the missionaries to provide volunteer opportunities on a regular basis. Of course we said yes!

Every Wednesday since, they have sent 20-30 volunteers for our 1 pm donation shift.  Whether helping out in our warehouse to sort meats, dry goods, produce, or helping with our numerous office & special event projects, they are an AMAZING group to work with. To date, they have volunteered a total of 3,642 hours! Read More …

May 2, 2017

Congrats to our Graduating Classes!

Author: Idalia Nunez

April 2017 Second Harvest Culinary Training Program GraduationOn April 28, 2017, Second Harvest Culinary Training Program held the graduation ceremony for Class 20, 21, and 22. During the graduation ceremony, certificates of completion were awarded to 24 students. Our commencement speaker was Chef Nora Galdiano from Sysco. Chef Nora reminded our graduates there is no easy road to success you must work hard but not forget to have fun. She pointed out to the importance of seeking out mentors and staying connected to people. Read More …

April 27, 2017

Wine Women & Shoes: A Huge Success!

Author: Maureen Mikel

WWS committee photoAt Second Harvest Food Bank of Central Florida, we believe compassion is always in fashion, and was that ever the case at the 7th Annual Wine Women and Shoes Orlando! On Saturday, April 22nd 2017 over 400 friends of the food bank joined together at The Ritz-Carlton Orlando, Grande Lakes to sip wine, shop, and show off fabulous shoes – all for the greater cause of supporting our neighbors in need!

A very special “Thank You” to Winnie Palmer Hospital for Women and Babies for joining us again for the 3rd year in a row as Wine Women and Shoes Orlando’s Presenting Partner! With the help of Winnie Palmer Hospital for Women and Babies, all of our generous Sponsors, the WW&S Orlando Chair and Committee, Marketplace vendors, Sole Men, and fabulous guests, over $290,000 was raised! That’s over 1 million meals that are able to be provided to the 1 in 6 Central Floridians that are in need of food assistance. So incredible!!

In case you weren’t able to attend, below are some of our favorite highlights from the event! Read More …

April 25, 2017

You + John Legend = More kids fed.

Author: Maria Diestro

Taste! Central Florida is giving one lucky winner a chance to see John Legend next month with an unforgettable concert experience! Simply make a $50 donation for a chance to win our exclusive John Legend ticket package giveaway while helping fund childhood hunger relief programs in our community.

•    Two tickets to John Legend on Saturday, May 13, 2017 at Coachman Park in Clearwater (preferred seating in the first 20 rows).
•    A one-night stay at the Tampa Marriott Waterside Hotel & Marina with complimentary breakfast buffet for two and valet parking.
•    Complimentary use of a Mercedes-Benz C-Class for three days and two nights.

A 900 value! Read More …

April 25, 2017

La La Summer Hope for Kids is Back!

Author: Maria Diestro

By Beth McKee

When someone says “I was a hungry child” or when teachers tell me about the struggles many of their students face daily, the reality of childhood hunger comes rushing in. It’s important for us to realize how many people struggle, so I’ve asked a few of my Swamp Sistas* to share their own experiences. The more we know, on a personal level, the better we can understand the need and help fill it.

Here’s what they had to say:

Lauren: “Hunger; something that some of us know all too well. Food; something that is often taken for granted. The worry of not knowing where your next meal will come from, the fear of being ridiculed for getting free or reduced lunch, and the sadness of not being “normal”, because you eat from your neighborhood food pantry. These are the things that are often felt by children struck by hunger. There is a hope to be instilled in those very same kids, and we can be part of it.” Read More …

April 19, 2017

Our Kids Cafe Story

Author: Santos Maldonado

Our organization quickly embraced America’s Second Harvest’s (what is now Feeding America) Kids Cafe Program soon after it was conceived in 1993. Since then, over 60 different locations in four counties have benefited from this prepared meal program.

  • Since 1993, over 2.2 million meals have been served.
  • 33% of those in the last 3 years.
  • From inception to 2015, prepared meals were purchased from an external vendor.
  • In October of 2015, our production kitchen began delivering cold meals.
  • In February of 2016, we partnered with Orange County Parks & Recreation to provide meals to their 12 after school centers!
  • In August of 2016, our kitchen began serving hot meals.
  • Last December, we opened up our first Kids Cafe in Brevard County.
  • Just last month, we opened up our second Brevard Kids Cafe.
  • Today, we serve over 1,400 kids each day at 27 different locations in 4 counties.View a Map of current sites.

Read More …