Hunger Task Force invests in network partners

Sep 27, 2021

Hunger Task Force and our network of partner food pantries weave together a safety net of support for local families. For the past 18 months, this network has operated resiliently through curbside, outdoor and no-contact distributions, and will continue to do so into the winter months.

This fall, an extra $500,000 of funding through The Emergency Food Assistance Program was made available to build capacity in the emergency food network so programs could take on more food and operate safely during no-contact distributions. Hunger Task Force invested 100% of these federal funds into our network, purchasing over 600 items including transit vans, refrigerators, freezers, pallet jacks, racks, PPE supplies, tables and more.

In August, Hunger Task Force worked to purchase and wrap 11 custom transit vans for organizations in our network (check out the video here). These vans will allow the organizations to streamline operations and transport resources more efficiently. This month, Hunger Task Force distributed these resources to 25 more organizations across our emergency food network. “People can’t come into our building right now,” says Robin Palzewicz of Ebenezer Lutheran Church. “With winter coming, the tents we received will be used as additional protection and shelter for guests visiting the pantry. We are so grateful to receive these supplies.”

Coordinating the purchase and pick-up of over 30 types of items, Hunger Task Force staff assisted partner representatives with loading supplies into vehicles from our new warehouse at 5000 W. Electric Avenue in West Milwaukee. “We don’t have the budget for these kinds of amenities,” says Lorenzya Polnitz, Director of Community Services with COA Youth & Family Centers. “Without the help from Hunger Task Force, we would go without these tools and resources – that would mean a lot more labor-intensive work for our staff and volunteers.”

Right now, Hunger Task Force is providing significant amounts of healthy foods—including freshly harvested Farm produce, milk and cheese—to over 23,000 people each month at local pantries. Pantry visits are expected to climb into the cold winter months, but Hunger Task Force and our partners will work side-by-side to ensure all are served with dignity.

Hunger Task Force is Milwaukee’s Free & Local food bank and Wisconsin’s anti-hunger leader. The organization provides healthy and nutritious food to hungry children, families and seniors in the community absolutely free of charge. Hunger Task Force was founded in 1974 by a local advocacy group who then formed Milwaukee’s first food bank. Today, Hunger Task Force is 100% supported by the community and provides a safety net of emergency food with dignity to a network of 75 food pantries, soup kitchens and homeless shelters. Through legislative analysis, education and community organizing, Hunger Task Force continues to advocate for anti-hunger policy at the local, state and federal level. For more information, visit