Program to substantially increase food pantries’ capacity for fresh food.

 

 

 

MANCHESTER, NH — The New Hampshire Food Bank, a program of Catholic Charities New Hampshire, recently received a $60,000 grant from Harvard Pilgrim Health Care Foundation and North Country Healthcare to deliver more fresh, nutritious food to those in need in the North Country. With this critical funding, the New Hampshire Food Bank has developed a comprehensive program to substantially increase North Country food pantries’ capacity for fresh foods.  The program consists of:

  • Three Mobile Food Pantries in Groveton, Berlin and Colebrook.
  • New commercial refrigerators for four North Country food pantries in Whitefield, Lancaster, Berlin and Colebrook.
  • Partnership with the North Country Farmers’ Co-op to deliver farm fresh foods to area agencies.
  • Support for the NH Food Bank’s Coos County Summer Meals Program, which provides fresh fruit, vegetables and milk to children in Coos County during the summer.

“As non-profits, Harvard Pilgrim and North Country Healthcare share a mission to support our communities,” said Warren West, CEO of North Country Healthcare.  “We are excited to jointly commit a total of $60,000 to help improve the health of our communities and ensure that all North Country residents have access to fresh, affordable food.”

While there is growing demand for more fresh food at the New Hampshire Food Bank’s partner agencies statewide and particularly in the North Country, agencies often lack the capacity to meet this need. This grant will fund the purchase of commercial refrigerators for four North Country food pantries, including Friends and Neighbors Food Pantry in Whitefield, Lancaster Community Cupboard, Feeding Hope Food Pantry in Berlin and Coos County Senior Meals Program in Colebrook.  These new refrigerators will allow food pantries to potentially double or triple the amount of fresh produce and other non-shelf stable food they offer.

“Harvard Pilgrim is proud to partner with North Country Healthcare in providing this grant to the New Hampshire Food Bank to get more fresh, nutritious food to those in need in northern New Hampshire,” said William Brewster, Vice President of Harvard Pilgrim Health Care, New Hampshire.  “Eating nutritious food, including more fresh fruits and vegetables, is the first step toward improving one’s health.”

Thanks to this support from Harvard Pilgrim and North Country Healthcare, the New Hampshire Food Bank will also host the following Mobile Food Pantries:

  • Groveton – February 17, 2018, at noon at Groveton High School, 65 State Street
  • Colebrook – March 24, 2018, at noon at Colebrook Elementary School, 27 Dumont Street
  • Berlin – April 28, 2018, at noon at Feeding Hope Food Pantry, 219 Willow Street

During these Mobile Food Pantries, the New Hampshire Food Bank will provide increased amounts of milk, cheese, eggs, yogurt, oranges, frozen vegetables and ground turkey and beef, in addition to non-perishable offerings. Each Mobile Food Pantry provides meals for 200 families.

“This generous support from Harvard Pilgrim and North Country Healthcare will allow us and our partner agencies to make a major difference in the North Country, by providing substantially more fresh produce, meat and dairy products to those in need,” said Eileen Liponis, executive director of the New Hampshire Food Bank. “More than 10-percent of New Hampshire residents are food insecure, meaning they do not know where their next meal is coming from, and the need is especially great during winter months. We are tremendously grateful for this support, which is addressing a major need in New Hampshire’s North Country.”

The New Hampshire Food Bank, which receives no state or federal funding for food distribution, delivers nutritious food to more than 425 partner agencies statewide, including food pantries, soup kitchens, afterschool programs, senior centers and other nonprofit feeding programs. During 2017, the New Hampshire Food Bank distributed 13.7 million pounds of food to its partners statewide. This year, due to the growing demand, the New Hampshire Food Bank expects to distribute more than 14 million pounds of food.

About North Country Healthcare
North Country Healthcare is the parent organization of four Critical Access Hospitals and one home health agency in Northern New Hampshire.  The member organizations include Androscoggin Valley Hospital in Berlin, Littleton Regional Healthcare in Littleton, Upper Connecticut Valley Hospital in Colebrook, Weeks Medical Center in Lancaster, and North Country Home Health and Hospice Agency in Littleton.  North Country Healthcare employs 1,400 staff and is the largest employer in the North Country.  This newly formed healthcare system services northern Grafton County and all of Coos County.  North Country Healthcare also collaborates with three Federally Qualified Health Clinics:  Ammonoosuc Community Health Services in Littleton, Coos County Family Health Services in Berlin, and Indian Stream Health Center in Colebrook.  Together we have formed a Limited Liability Corporation (LLC) to develop a Clinically Integrated Network for all hospitals and providers in the North Country to begin addressing population health and to improve the health indicators for all residents of the North Country.

To learn more about North Country Healthcare, visit www. http://wearench.org.

About Harvard Pilgrim Health Care Foundation
Created in 1980, The Harvard Pilgrim Health Care Foundation supports Harvard Pilgrim’s mission to improve the quality and value of health care for the people and communities we serve. The Harvard Pilgrim Foundation provides the tools, training and leadership to help build healthy communities throughout Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, and New Hampshire. In 2017, the Harvard Pilgrim Foundation awarded more than $2.3 million in grants to more than 900 nonprofit organizations in the region.  Since its inception in 1980, the Foundation has awarded $145 million in funds and resources throughout the four states.

For more information, please visit www.harvardpilgrim.org/foundation.

About the New Hampshire Food Bank
The New Hampshire Food Bank, a program of Catholic Charities New Hampshire, has been working to relieve hunger in the Granite State since 1984.  The New Hampshire Food Bank receives no federal or state funding for food distribution.  In 2017, as the state’s only Food Bank, the New Hampshire Food Bank efficiently procured and distributed 13.7 million pounds of food to people in need through more than 425 non-profit registered agencies. Agencies include food pantries, neighborhood centers, low-income housing sites, senior nutrition centers, family crisis centers, hospices, soup kitchens, emergency shelters, after school programs, and day care centers. For more information about the New Hampshire Food Bank, please visitwww.nhfoodbank.org. Find us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

For more information and to donate, visit www.nhfoodbank.org.

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