For more than forty years, the Food Bank of Central & Eastern North Carolina at Wilmington has been quietly operating in the city’s Southside. In that time, we’ve provided millions of pounds of food to partner food pantries, soup kitchens, and shelters in New Hanover County as well as Brunswick, Columbus, and Pender.
Over the years, the Food Bank’s mission has expanded beyond nourishing people. While feeding people is a huge part of what we do, and will continue to be, the Food Bank is working to build solutions to ultimately end hunger. Hurricane Florence and the COVID-19 pandemic underscored the need in our community even further. To do that work, we need to make a shift in how we operate. And our current space on Marstellar Street cannot support those efforts.
Like so many people over the course of the last two years, including many of your own families, the Food Bank has needed to rethink what the future will look like. In 2018, Food Bank staff and key community volunteers came together to plan for a new facility that will provide the infrastructure and space to reach more of our neighbors facing food insecurity. Additionally, the future of the Food Bank will allow us to do new work, addressing hunger at its root causes.
With the support of many–including the Bruce Barclay Cameron Foundation, the Dan Cameron Family Foundation, nCino, the State of North Carolina, New Hanover County, the City of Wilmington, Novant Health New Hanover Regional Medical Center Foundation, Food Lion and many other local foundations–we are slated to open the nCino Hunger Solution Center in early 2023. The new facility will not only allow us to distribute more food but offer a market where the local community can purchase fresh food, and we will operate a commercial kitchen to produce meals for our community, respond to disasters like Hurricane Florence, and train workers for the hospitality industry we rely on so much in this area. There will be an urban farm on-site, expanded opportunities for volunteers, and more strategic and targeted nutrition education.
Ultimately, the new infrastructure and facility will support community resiliency. We are excited to have the space to truly be a Food Bank for the community and connect with our neighbors. Please join us -- help us open our doors at 1000 Greenfield Street.
Emma Dill - Dec 4, 2023
Staff Reports - Dec 4, 2023
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