What is a Food Bank?
A food bank collects and distributes food to hunger relief charities. Through our Food Bank Program, Feeding South Dakota is able to accept, store, and distribute large donations of food. We have the capacity to accept a semi-loads of food, then work with our network of 350 non-profit partners across the state to get that food into every county in South Dakota.
Some food comes from donations made by manufacturers to the Feeding America Network, which Feeding South Dakota is a part of. Other food comes from local grocery stores – food like produce that is approaching the end of its shelf life, but still good. Feeding South Dakota is able to accept and distribute this food to individuals in need, preventing this food from being thrown away. Feeding South Dakota operates the only Food Bank in our state.
Donors and partners provide food and monetary donations to Feeding South Dakota. With financial donations, Feeding South Dakota can purchase, procure, and transport food to our facilities. Our partner non-profits, known as agencies, include youth programs, senior centers, community kitchens, food pantries, homeless shelters, and domestic violence shelters. More than 77 percent of the agencies partnered with Feeding South Dakota report that if the food bank was eliminated, there would be significant or devastating effects on their programs.
Food bank vs. food pantry
A food bank operates as a warehousing facility for millions of pounds of food that go out through other community organizations. A food pantry functions as the arms which reach out to the community directly. Feeding South Dakota also operates our own Food Pantry and Mobile Food Pantry Programs.