The mission of the St. Thomas Food Pantry is to address hunger, loneliness, and neglect in our city by providing our neighbors with nutritious food, positive social interactions, and educational information focusing on healthy lifestyles.
482,573 pounds distributed
Each household received 30+ pounds of food each week, and this year marked a dramatic increase in the amount of fresh produce we distributed.
We distributed groceries to 24,530 individuals in 2021. While guests are allowed to pick up 52 times per year, the majority (83%) picked up 12 times or fewer.
Powered by Volunteers!
Wow! 308 volunteers gave 8,476 hours of their time in 2021. Volunteers work 2 hour shifts on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays.
Update on the St. Thomas Food Pantry - January, 2022
Kristin Cummings and Liz Pearce
Beginning in January 2022, the St. Thomas Food Pantry has a new Director at the helm. Kristin Cummings, who has volunteered at the food pantry for the last eight years and served as Volunteer Coordinator since June 2020, will take on operations from Liz Pearce, who has served as Director since June 2017. Liz will be resuming her career in nonprofit leadership, but will stay on as a volunteer to help with fundraising and community relations. She will continue to serve on the board of Feed More as a liaison to Feed More's Agency Advisory Committee, which she chairs.
Liz noted that "Kristin's commitment to the food pantry during the pandemic has been phenomenal and her care for our volunteers is exceptional. She has implemented new processes to track volunteer hours, recruited and retained volunteers and led operations when I was out of town or unable to be at the food pantry. I can't think of a better person to serve the St. Thomas Food Pantry as it grows and evolves."
Herbert states "We owe a great debt of gratitude to Liz for her dedication and professionalism in nurturing and growing the food pantry. She has shepherded this important ministry through the intense period of pandemic and helped form it into the efficient and hope-filled operation it has become. Thank you, Liz, for your loving care in growing this much needed ministry.
I can think of no person better equipped to fill Liz’s shoes than Kristin. Her ability to lead, her dedication and her joyful commitment to this important ministry is constantly on display for anyone who has been a part of what we’re doing. I am looking forward to continuing to work with Kristin as we move forward."
Liz added, "The church members and community supporters of our food pantry have lifted us all up during dark times, and I will miss serving as Director. It has been a truly rewarding experience to serve in this role. I look forward to visiting and volunteering when I can."
The St. Thomas Food Pantry has been a mission of St. Thomas Episcopal Church for over 20 years, and is open to the public every Thursday from 2:00 to 5:00 pm. Around 225 households pick up groceries each week, and over 400,000 pounds of food are distributed annually.
It has been quite a journey, and without each and every person, we wouldn't be able to do what we do. You have given the Food Pantry your time, your donations, your home-made masks, the bounty of your garden, your recycled grocery bags and hundreds of other gifts. We wouldn't have made it this far without you, and we aren't stopping now. We have so much hope in our hearts, thanks to all of you!
FOOD PANTRY RESPONSE TO COVID-19
In light of concerns about COVID-19, our pantry will remain open on Thursdays, but we will be offering a modified experience that includes recommended social distancing, instead of our typical "pop-up market" set up.
Pre-packed bags will be given out on Thursdays between 2:30 and 5:00 pm. If guests are in cars, they should enter the driveway and pull their car around to the parking lot side of the church, and groceries will be brought out to the car. If guests are walking, groceries will be brought to the Parish Hall door.
Thank you for your understanding and commitment to the wellness of our community.
For information about our Food Pantry or to leave a message call: 804-321-9548. This line can be reached at any time and lists our hours, directions, requirements, weather advisories, or allows you to leave a message. A valid form of ID is helpful, but not required.
Volunteer Opportunities - Please email Volunteer Coordinator, Cyndi Schulte (email@example.com )
As a mainly volunteer-run organization, St. Thomas depends on volunteer help throughout each week. In response to COVID-19, our volunteer needs have been modified to follow CDC guidelines, as well as best practices indicated by the Virginia Department of Health and the Virginia Cooperative Extension. Each volunteer will be required to sign a waiver prior to volunteering at the St. Thomas Food Pantry, stating that they have not traveled within the past two weeks, and that they are not exhibiting symptoms of illness. In addition, we ask that all volunteers follow our Healthy Volunteer Guidelines.
Picking up donated food at Food Lion - Volunteers will pick-up food, document the weight and put away the items our storage rooms. Certain Tuesdays and Thursdays at Food Lion, Azalea Brook Hill, 11:00 am. Takes about one hour.
Pre-packing bags for guests - Volunteers will pack available inventory into grocery bags. Wednesdays at 10 am and 1:30 pm, Thursdays at 10 am.
Inventory Management at St. Thomas - Restocking items, counting totals, organizing the storage area. Varies.
Distribution Day - Volunteers will set up tables, chairs, manage inventory, restock shelves and place bags in cars. Thursdays at 1:30 pm and 4:00 pm.
Food Rescue and Storage - Volunteers will help unload a delivery truck and store it our storage rooms. Volunteers must be able to lift boxes. Wednesdays at 7:00 am.
To volunteer for any of these opportunities, please email Cyndi Schulte, firstname.lastname@example.org.
In accordance with Federal law and U.S. Department of Agriculture policy, this institution is prohibited from discriminating on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex, age or disability. To file a complaint of discrimination, write: USDA, Director, Office of Application, 1400 Independence Avenue, S.W., Washington, DC, 20250-9410, or call toll-free (866) 632-9992 (voice). Individuals who are hearing impaired or have speech disabilities may contact USDA through the Federal Relay Service at (800) 877-8339; or (800) 845-6136 (Spanish). USDA is an equal opportunity provider and employer.