What We Do
Aurora Area Interfaith Food Pantry is committed to providing nutritious food relief to the community in a humanitarian and compassionate manner. When surveyed, 99% of clients reported that they were satisfied with the food they received and 93% reported that the food helped their families improve their overall health. Read on to learn about how Aurora Food Pantry is ending hunger in our community or scroll to the bottom of this page to see a video of the pantry in action.
Food Distribution Programs
We believe access to fresh, nutritious food is everyone’s right. That’s why we distribute food 3 days a week, 51 weeks a year. While most pantries allow clients to visit every other week or once a month, clients may visit Aurora Food Pantry once every week. That way, if an unexpected need arises, no one has to wait for food. Get distribution information here.
Food for Thought
In the five counties we serve, nearly 40% of children are eligible for free/reduced price lunch at school. During the summertime, these kids are in danger of hunger and malnutrition. To close this gap, extra food is provided to families with children over the summer.
Senior Mobile Pantries
Senior citizens have special health and nutritional needs. Unfortunately, many are home-bound or have difficulty getting to the pantry. To ease this burden, we bring mobile pantries to low-income senior housing complexes. This allows seniors to choose the food that best meets their unique needs.
Hunger can affect anyone, including our nation’s veterans. According to the National Veterans Foundation, 1.5 million veterans live in poverty. Each year, around Veterans Day in November, we host a special food distribution just for veterans. This event increases awareness of the pantry among veterans, so they know where to go if they or a fellow veteran needs food assistance.
Food waste is a huge problem in the United States. According to the Department of Agriculture, 33 million tons of perfectly edible food ends up in landfills each year – that’s 40% of all the food produced in the United States!
To help correct this unsustainable situation, Aurora Food Pantry has greatly expanded its food rescue operation over the last several years. Each week, we make more than 40 trips to retrieve this perfectly edible food, donated by grocery stores, food wholesalers, and local farmers. The items we get through food rescue are mostly fresh foods that we don’t receive through traditional food drives, such as meat, dairy, eggs, produce and bread.
Today, food rescue makes up over half the food we distribute. These foods are among the most nutrient-dense and costly to consumers. Therefore, we are not only providing healthy options for our clients, but helping them stretch their budgets as well.
For decades, food pantries would give out boxes of pre-selected items to clients. But what happens if a client receives food they can’t eat due to allergies, dietary or health restrictions? What if they aren’t sure how to prepare the food or lack the means to do so?
At Aurora Food Pantry, clients select the food that best meets their needs. Modeled after a typical grocery store experience, clients take a cart and go up and down the aisles, selecting items. The number of items a client receives is determined by the size of their family and the stock available.
By offering choice, less food goes to waste, clients can better plan meals for their families’ needs, and we are able to serve our community with dignity and compassion.
Hunger is but one aspect of poverty. Therefore, we proudly partner with a wide variety of community organizations that are on-site several times a month to help enrich and improve the lives of our clients.
- Aunt Martha’s
- Communities In Schools of Aurora
- Northern Illinois Food Bank (SNAP outreach)
- Presence Mercy Medical
- Rush Copley Medical Center
- SPARK Aurora Early Childhood Collaboration
- University of Illinois Extension Service
- VNA Health Care