Erin Lynch is the Executive Director of the Franklin Food Pantry, one of the 550 hunger relief agencies throughout eastern Massachusetts that receives food from The Greater Boston Food Bank (GBFB). The Pantry serves 600 Franklin households in need, who pick-up groceries once a month and can access more healthy foods through new programs.
“When I was a kid, my parents ran a ‘soup kitchen’ in inner city Baltimore where I helped out. The Franklin Pantry’s mission is one I’m passionate about.
“GBFB is a tremendous resource for us. Though we are a small organization entirely funded by individual donations and grants, we get to leverage GBFB’s huge ‘buying power’ to acquire quality food we might not be able to afford otherwise. This is especially true for expensive frozen meats and other high-protein, high-nutrient items.
“In addition, GBFB shares best practices and connects the Pantry to needed resources, potential partners, and important information. Its system of ranking food items by their nutritional value helps us ensure we provide healthier, more balanced food choices to our clients. Inspired by GBFB, we’ve implemented a ‘Healthy Futures Market,’ that collaborates with local farms for a weekly distribution of fresh fruits and vegetables in season, and features a chef who offers samples of nutritious recipes using the items offered.
“GBFB’s leadership and support are helping the Franklin Food Pantry to increase our capacity. Using their model, we’ve implemented a regular Mobile Pantry which allows us to bring food to those who might have a hard time getting to and from our location: seniors, families with small children, and individuals who are disabled. These, along with other new programs, have increased our annual food distribution by 30,000 pounds.
Greater Boston Food Bank
“I’m really excited about our recent GBFB capacity-building grant that will pay for a new walk-in refrigeration unit for the Pantry. It will allow us to safely store much more food so that we can serve even more of the Franklin community.”
All of the work that the Franklin Food Pantry does (along with GBFB’s 550 member agencies) is critical to achieving our strategic objective of providing ONE MEAL A DAY to everyone in need in eastern Massachusetts.
You can review the full Greater Boston Food Bank newsletter here