Your Questions about our Weekly Food Distribution, Answered
March 2021 marked the one year anniversary of a weekly food distribution on Saturday mornings at New Birth Center for Community Inclusion in Skyway, led by members of the Urban Food Systems Pact and community volunteers. Hunger has been a problem in our community for years. And the arrival of the Covid-19 pandemic just exacerbated the need for fresh, healthy and affordable food in our community. Recognizing this increased need, and seeing a gap in what food banks in neighboring communities could offer, the Saturday food distribution was one of several new food pantries that launched in Skyway in 2020. Each Saturday, starting at 10 a.m. until supplies run out, we give away dozens of boxes containing vegetables, dairy and meat, as well as frozen prepared meals. We often also have diapers, books, and other resources to give away. Want to know more? Here are some of the frequently asked questions, and our responses!
When and where is the food distribution?
Every Saturday, starting at 10 a.m. until supplies run out (or until 12 noon, whichever comes first). We operate as a “drive through” in the parking lot behind the New Birth Center for Community Inclusion, at 12643 Renton Ave South in Skyway. We usually also distribute food at the Skyway Resource Center, which takes place every other Friday afternoon at Campbell Hill Elementary, 6418 S. 124th St. -- check out the “Upcoming Events” listing on our homepage for the next scheduled date.
Who can get food and other resources from the Saturday food distribution?
Our purpose is to serve the Skyway/West Hill neighborhood, and we serve anyone who needs food assistance. We aim to serve everyone with dignity and respect. We do not ask for proof of income eligibility, residence or other identification. If you are part of the Skyway community and you need food for yourself, your family, or your household, we are here for you.
What kind of food will I receive?
We are currently providing food boxes that include vegetables, fruit, meat and dairy products (including milk). The exact contents of the boxes will vary from week to week. As an example, a recent food box contained: milk, chicken meatballs, potatoes, onions, apples, oranges, eggs, yogurt, cottage cheese, cheese, carrots, and franks. We sometimes have additional vegetables to add to these boxes. In addition, on Saturdays, we are providing frozen meals prepared by our partners at Fare Start; the exact meals vary from week to week, and can include “family size” meals (serving about 4 people) as well as individual meals. Recent frozen meals have included: vegetarian enchiladas, turkey in white sauce with vegetables, pasta with mixed vegetables, and more.
I don’t have a car. How can I get access to these resources?
Many community members come with a friend, family member or neighbor in one car -- we are always happy to serve multiple households in one vehicle. You can also feel free to send someone to pick up food resources for you. You are welcome to walk or bike over, but you will probably want a wagon or cart to carry home your food; the food boxes are heavy! In addition, we are exploring the possibility of partnering with United Way King County to deliver food resources to those who cannot come in person. If you are interested in the delivery option, please contact us.
I’m on a tight budget right now. I could definitely use some fresh food. But I’m not sure if this food distribution is for me. I’m afraid of feeling judged, and I don’t want to take resources away from others who need it more. What’s your advice?
We don’t think anyone should have to choose between paying for food or paying your rent or mortgage, medical, utility, phone bills, or any other essentials. Likewise, no one should have to subsist on cheap junk food because they can’t afford food that is healthy and fresh. Everyone deserves quality food, and we are doing what we can to make sure everyone in our community has that. In short, if the food we are providing would make a meaningful difference in your health and wellbeing or make it easier for you to stretch your budget to pay for essentials, it is meant for you. We hope you will come by!