Food for Families, formerly known as Blessings in a Backpack, is part of Trinity Cathedral’s hunger ministry, a neighborhood outreach program. While the goals of the ministry remain the same–to provide nutritious food for the students and families of the school–Trinity Cathedral in January 2014 entered into a partnership with the Cleveland Food Bank and the new name better reflects this partnership. On the second Friday of every month, the Food Bank’s Mobile Food Pantry Program delivers food to the school (fruit, vegetables and breads)–enough to feed all the students, their families and seniors in the neighborhood. Upcoming changes in the program by the Food Bank will add canned goods, dairy products and pasta/legumes to our current distribution. Twice a month we serve an average of 100-150 families through this program.
On average, around 12 to 15 volunteers are needed every other week to distribute fresh produce and other food products at Marion-Sterling. Volunteers meet at the “Mobile Food Pantry” at 3 p.m., in the school’s gymnasium on the scheduled Fridays to prepare items for distribution. If you are able to make a commitment to helping feed students, their families and seniors in our neighborhood, please contact Volunteer Coordinator and Mary Sickbert. Questions may also be directed to Dale Murphy or Ginger Bitikofer. Whatever time you are able to commit is valuable and helps us to sustain this vital ministry as we seek to serve our neighbors.
What’s Expected of Volunteers
Volunteers are involved in the setup, distribution and final cleanup. Setup includes the sorting, packaging (if needed) and arranging of food for distribution. Distribution includes interaction with families, i.e., assisting, suggesting ideas for the preparation of the food being distributed and encouraging recipient participation. Final cleanup includes the disposing of empty boxes, wiping down tables and assisting in returning the tables to their proper place in the school gymnasium.
Morgan Stanley’s Healthy Cities Initiatives Comes to Cleveland
Food for Families, Trinity’s hunger ministry at Marion-Sterling Elementary School in partnership with the Cleveland Food Bank, recently played host to the kickoff of Morgan Stanley’s Healthy Cities Initiative. The program was selected by the Food Bank “because of its successful and organized food distribution track record,” explains Trinity member and Food for Families coordinator Dale Murphy. “Unofficially, they refer to Trinity’s program as the ‘poster child’ of the mobile school pantries.”
The initiative expands the work of providing food to M-S families. Healthy Cities Initiative includes nutrition education and Vitamix curriculum, Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) outreach, high-quality medical care and activity kits to encourage and increase physical activity in the schools. Learn more about Healthy Cities Initiative.
2015 Recipe Project
Volunteers, school staff and Marion-Sterling families joined together to produce a recipe book that was distributed in December. Favorite recipes were shared for creating delicious dishes using ingredients found on Food for Families Fridays at Marion-Sterling. Download a PDF of the recipe book.
Collection Wish List
Chicken Noodle or with Stars Soup (10.5 oz. can)
Tomato Soup (10.5 oz. can)
Diced Tomatoes (14.5 oz. can)
Kidney Beans (15 oz. can)
Black Beans (15 oz. can)
Corn (14.5 oz. can)
Green Beans (14.5 oz. can)
Any Greens (Collards, Spinach, etc.) (14.5 oz. can)
Pork and Beans (14.5 oz. can)
Mac and Cheese (7.25 oz. box)
Rice (15 oz. box)
Box of Oatmeal packets
Corn Flakes or Cheerios (standard size box – around 18 oz. or 500 g)
Pasta Sauce (24 oz. plastic jar)
Peanut Butter (18 oz. plastic jar)
Jelly: Strawberry or Grape (18 oz. plastic jar)