White Center Emergency Food Association, also known as White Center Food Bank (WCFB), provides emergency food assistance to residents of White Center, Highline, Boulevard Park and Southwest Seattle. They have seen an 80% increase in need for their services since the start of the recession.
Every client who comes to the food bank receives a $5.00 voucher once a month through the Healthy Food Gift Certificate Program, which can be used at three different markets in White Center to obtain fresh fruits or vegetables. The markets are immigrant owned and have the produce many of their clients are seeking at affordable prices. The Healthy Food Gift Certificate Program has a 75% redemption rate.
Their Mobile Food Bank Program delivers food to three senior and disabled low-income housing complexes, twice a week in an effort to serve individuals who are unable to come to the food bank. At Arrowhead Gardens they served 80 individuals in their first delivery. They have projected that they will be serving nearly 80% of the renters in 400 units once the building has full occupancy. An additional delivery program will be set in motion once the apartment complex is ready for occupancy. By year end, they expect to serve 3,600 seniors and disabled persons through the Mobile Food Bank Program.
Accessibility and Cultural Competency
WCFB serves a diverse community with 43% of their clients being Hispanic and 15% Asian/Pacific Islander. They seek out foods that are culturally relevant and address dietary needs, including Halal meat for Muslim families. Agency materials are printed in four languages, and they recruit volunteers who can assist with language needs during distribution. They have recently hired staff who speak Vietnamese, Spanish, Chinese, and Arabic to do intake.
Partnerships and Collaboration
WCFB partners with Food Lifeline, Northwest Harvest, Westside Baby, and the South King County Food Bank Coalition. They are located next to King County Public Health which offers them cooking demonstrations using the food bank’s ingredients. Additionally, a community garden is located near the food bank where residents may garden and donate their produce to WCFB.
Grant History with The Seattle Foundation:
Grants Awarded through The Seattle Foundation Grantmaking Program:
$25,000.00||support the Healthy Food Gift Certificate Program.|
$10,000.00||provide general operating support.|
$10,000.00||support general operating expenses. |
$10,000.00||support general operating expenses.|
$10,000.00||support the capital campaign.|