Programs

Using these fourteen feeding programs, the North Texas Food Bank provides access to food at more than 1,100 feeding locations throughout our service area. Each program presents a unique solution to the ongoing problem of hunger in our community.

Programs

Agency University
The Agency University empowers Partner Agencies by providing education and training to enhance their food and hunger programs, leverage resources and increase their capacity. In fiscal year 2012, eight courses were available in the fields of community gardening, finance, food pantry operations, fund development, grant writing, health and nutrition, PR/marketing and technology. This year, NTFB had 104 participants complete 928 hours of training, provided free of charge. Participants also qualify to receive continuing education college credits from El Centro Community College.

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Louise Gartner Charitable Produce Center
Founded in 1994 with a generous gift from Louise Gartner to NTFB, this center transforms the large amount of waste in the fresh produce market into a source of nourishment for hungry North Texans. NTFB is deeply grateful to Louise Gartner for her visionary leadership. With a grant from Kraft Foods, Inc., NTFB developed the Rural Produce Initiative in 1999 to distribute fresh produce to Partner Agencies outside of Dallas County each week. In fiscal year 2011, the program distributed 4,509,812 pounds of produce throughout all 13 counties in NTFB’s service area.

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Commodities Supplemental Food Program
In 2000, NTFB became the first Commodities Supplemental Food Program (known locally as People and Nutrition, or PAN) distributor in Texas. The program provides surplus USDA commodities for low income Dallas County residents who meet certain requirements. Each month, 8,500 participants receive an estimated 32 pounds of USDA commodities at 98 PAN distribution sites in Dallas County. PAN is a partnership of the U.S. Department of Agriculture, Texas Department of Agriculture and NTFB.

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 Adjudication and Compliance, 1400 Independence Avenue, SW, Washington, DC 20250-9410 or call (202) 260-1026, (866) 632-9992 (toll free) or (202) 401-0216 (TDD). USDA is an equal opportunity provider and employer.

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Community Kitchen
The mission of the kitchen is to offer nutritious, fully-prepared frozen meals that Partner Agencies can heat and serve to the hungry while providing culinary job skills training to disadvantaged individuals with an interest in a food service career. A 3,000 square foot kitchen at NTFB provides an average of 10,000 meals weekly, which are then distributed to 39 Partner Agencies. Up to 20 students, primarily from the Texas Second Chance Program in partnership with Dawson State Prison, receive food service training each year while helping prepare meals.

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Disaster Relief
The North Texas Food Bank is part of a local collaboration called the Mass Care Task Force (MCTF), which leverages the strengths of four separate organizations - the American Red Cross, Salvation Army, North Texas Food Bank, and the Volunteer Center of North Texas - to respond following a local disaster. The vision of the Mass Care Task Force is a North Texas community prepared to effectively and efficiently meet the humanitarian needs resulting from a major disaster - even a "worst case scenario" event impacting as many as 250,000 citizens. The North Texas Food Bank's unique role during MCTF activation is to immediately provide food and beverages during the initial day of response. Click here to access the 2013 Annual Report for the Mass Care Task Force.

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Food for Families
Through a cooperative effort between NTFB and more than 19 Partner Agencies, pre-qualified clients of participating Partners are issued a voucher for specific food distribution. Clients meet Partner volunteers at a specific parking lot, a drive-through line is organized and food is delivered from NTFB trucks. In fiscal year 2012, more than 674,682 pounds of food were distributed to more than 13,787 families and 52,694 individuals.

Volunteer for Food for Families

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Food 4 Kids
Elementary school children on the free and reduced-price school meal program often face hunger when these meals are not available on weekends. The Food 4 Kids program provides backpacks full of nonperishable, kid-friendly food for them to take home on Friday afternoons. The program grew to 330 schools in fiscal year 2012 and approximately 11,000 chronically hungry children in Dallas, Denton, Collin, Rockwall and Fannin counties received backpacks full of food each weekend during the school year.

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Food 4 Paws
The Food 4 Paws program, funded through Communities Foundation of Texas, enables the large-scale distribution of dog and cat food to families and individuals seeking assistance through NTFB Partner Agencies.

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Hub & Spoke Redistribution Site
Crossroads Community Services (CCS) of Downtown Dallas is a model food pantry provider and a redistribution partner of the North Texas Food Bank. Through the Hub & Spoke project, CCS has replicated its nutrition-based, client-focused pantry model at over 50 Dallas County program sites or "spokes". CCS does this by partnering with smaller organizations and groups of recipients. By working with CCS, instead of applying to become NTFB Partner Agencies, small organizations are able to provide the highest quality food assistance that our network offers at the lowest possible cost and without the demands of operating a traditional pantry. Recipients of food assistance who live in the same housing developments become partners in the distribution process and help make the service much more accessible by picking up food in bulk at CCS and bringing it back home for themselves and their neighbors. About half of the more than 2 million pounds of food per year that NTFB distributes to CCS reaches community members at home or close to home through "spokes".

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Kids Cafe
NTFB’s Kids Cafe program began in 1998 as a way to provide nutritious after-school meals to children who may not have enough to eat when they go home from school. NTFB currently operates 26 Kids Cafe sites with generous funding from several donors. More than 257,811 meals were served last year to children in Dallas, Collin and Grayson counties.

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Main Program
The Main Program sources donations of perishable and nonperishable food items and nonfood items. These items are then distributed to area food pantries, after-school programs, senior citizen food programs, soup kitchens, shelters and other entities in our 13 county service area.  Each month, the majority of the food moving through our two distribution centers comes from the Main Program.  

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Mobile Food Pantry
The Mobile Food Pantry program provides emergency food boxes that provide enough food for two people to eat for four days. We currently deliver food boxes once a month to four locations in Dallas, Collin and Rockwall counties, serving over 800 families and 2000 individuals. Food items in each box include pasta, rice, beans, canned fruit, canned vegetables, cereal, juice and snacks. Water and produce is also included on the truck upon availability. This program is designed to serve those who are unable to access a food pantry in their neighborhoods.

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Nutrition Education/Cooking Matters
In fiscal year 2011, 372 participants were served through 26 six-week classes, a 22 percent increase from 2010. Additionally, 12,287 participants received nutrition education through nutrition workshops, cooking demonstrations and events in the community targeting low-income populations.

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School Pantry
This program distributes non-perishable items and fresh produce to students and their families at four schools. Distribution takes place both during and after school for the sake of convenience. Each student who visits the school pantry leaves with over 40 pounds of food. In 2012, 350,876 meals were distributed through school pantry programs.

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Senior Box Program (PAN)
In 2000, NTFB became the first Commodities Supplemental Food Program distributor in Texas, where the program is known as People and Nutrition (PAN). PAN provides surplus USDA commodities for low income Dallas County residents who meet certain requirements. In our area, nearly all PAN participants are seniors age 60 years or older. Each month, 8,500 households receive an estimated 32 pounds of USDA commodities at 98 PAN distribution sites in Dallas County. PAN is a partnership of the U.S. Department of Agriculture, Texas Department of Agriculture and NTFB.

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 Adjudication and Compliance, 1400 Independence Avenue, SW, Washington, DC 20250-9410 or call (202) 260-1026, (866) 632-9992 (toll free) or (202) 401-0216 (TDD). USDA is an equal opportunity provider and employer.

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Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP)
SNAP addresses the nutritional needs of low-income Texas families and is one of the nation's most important defenses against hunger. However, many barriers to participation remain. Nationally, only 72 percent of those eligible for this program benefit from it. In Texas, only 62 percent of those eligible receive assistance. NTFB outreach coordinators help increase enrollment through application assistance, education and outreach in 13 Texas counties. It's completely free for the applicants. In 2012, NTFB provided access to 16.5 million meals through the SNAP program.

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Texas Second Chance
In 1997, NTFB formed a collaborative partnership with the Texas Department of Criminal Justice. Texas Second Chance allows selected prison confinees to donate time and volunteer at the NTFB up to five days a week. As volunteer laborers, they receive job skills training in warehousing and food service. This training vastly improves participants’ ability to successfully reintegrate into the community. Last year, participants in the Texas Second Chance program provided more than 22,500 hours of community service to NTFB.

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North Texas Food Bank 4500 S. Cockrell Hill Road Dallas, TX 75236-2028 214.330.1396 (MAP IT)

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