Serving the greater Edmonds community for over four decades.
The Edmonds Food Bank was founded by Peggy Kennedy and Gretchen Dixon in the closet of the United Methodist Church, initially without a refrigerator or freezer space. As the need for their services grew, they relocated from the closet to a classroom and eventually to the current location known as Kennedy Hall.
During its early days, the food bank served approximately 20 people per week by providing them with a bag of groceries. Over the years, the demand for assistance has increased significantly, and the food bank now serves over 800 families every week, equating to over 40,000 pounds of food per week.
In an effort to expand its reach and provide more resources to the community, the Edmonds Food Bank joined the Snohomish County Foodbank Coalition. This partnership allowed them to access funding at the state and federal levels. In addition, Edmonds Food Bank works in partnership with Northwest Harvest and Food Lifeline. Nowadays, dedicated volunteer drivers regularly pick up donations from a variety of stores, including Costco, Fred Meyer, QFC, Safeway, Target, Trader Joe’s, WinCo, and others.
In 2019, the Edmonds Food Bank began the process of becoming an independent 501(c)3 organization, enabling the organization to apply for grants, implement additional programs, and define a mission focused on addressing food insecurity and its root causes. They implemented several initiatives to enhance their services and further assist those in need, including partnerships with organizations that support unique community groups and provide food through EFB. They established partnerships with local farms and community gardens, providing an increased amount of fresh produce at each distribution and building additional relationships with the community.
Additionally, to address hunger more comprehensively, the food bank implemented a nutrition policy and prioritized offering healthier food options to their customers. In partnership with WSU SNAP-Ed, EFB provides recipes and education to empower individuals and families to make healthier food choices and manage resources more effectively.
In response to the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020, the Edmonds Food Bank swiftly adapted its operations to ensure the health and safety of staff, volunteers, and customers. They implemented stringent hygiene protocols, including increased sanitization, social distancing measures, and, most importantly, an online ordering system that allowed the food bank to continue to provide individualized support to its customers. During the pandemic, EFB was open every week without any service interruptions and provided groceries to meet the varied needs of our customers. These crucial efforts helped alleviate food insecurity and reduce stress for many households during these challenging times.
Looking ahead to the future, the Edmonds Food Bank remains committed to the mission of providing food assistance, access to resources, and educational programs to households based on their needs. They continue to rely on the support of dedicated volunteers, generous donors, and strong community partnerships in their ongoing fight against hunger.