Starting July 1, Feeding Tampa Bay will be rolling out our proven direct distribution model in Manatee County to ensure the same amount of food – if not more – reaches the 50,000-hungry people across the community.
This page outlines the details of this transition, but please contact us immediately if you have any questions – or if you need food.
At Feeding Tampa Bay, we believe that access to nutritious food is a fundamental human right. In Manatee County alone, there are 50,000 people who are hungry and therefore central to every decision we make for the 10-county region we serve.
As part of Feeding Tampa Bay’s 10-county service territory, it will continue to distribute 2 million pounds of food through food pantries across Manatee County and plans to grow this volume of food by 2019.
Feeding Tampa Bay’s model will not require Manatee-based agencies to absorb more expenses in receiving food. In fact, Feeding Tampa Bay—as part of its transition plan—will absorb all transportation costs as well as waive all fees associated with food delivery and pick-up for the 2018 calendar year. Feeding Tampa Bay’s goal in transitioning to this model is to reduce the transportation and storage challenges that its agency partners face. Local agencies will have several options for getting food from Feeding Tampa Bay before, during and after the transition – see the facts below for all the ways you can work with us.
As reported through an issued press release on April 20, Feeding Tampa Bay has ended its partner services contract with the Food Bank of Manatee. Since that time, Feeding Tampa Bay has been facilitating agency outreach, hosting training sessions and conducting assessments to identify the current capacity of the agencies and plan for future strategies.
How do I get food in Manatee County?
Feeding Tampa Bay can assure that the same amount of food–if not more–will be provided to Manatee County through its direct distribution model. Local agencies will have several options for getting food from Feeding Tampa Bay before, during and after the transition.
Local agencies have three ways of getting food from Feeding Tampa Bay:
Importantly, all Manatee-based agencies still have the opportunity to partner with and pick up food from the Food Bank of Manatee. Feeding Tampa Bay will also deploy direct distributions to individuals and families in the county.
Will working directly with Feeding Tampa Bay cost Manatee food pantries more?
Feeding Tampa Bay’s model will not require Manatee-based agencies to absorb more expenses in receiving food. In fact, Feeding Tampa Bay has included in its plan to absorb all transportation costs as well as waive all fees associated with food delivery and pick-up for the 2018 calendar year. Feeding Tampa Bay’s ultimate goal in transitioning to this model is to reduce the transportation and storage challenges that its agency partners face. This model has proven to work in other counties and Feeding Tampa Bay expects the same positive results in Manatee County.
How exactly is the Feeding Tampa Bay distribution model proven?
Our confidence comes from a model that is tested. When the same model was implemented in Pinellas, Pasco and Polk counties, these communities saw an increase in distribution efficiencies, overall supply of food and improved delivery time – all empowering each community to grow healthier and stronger. In fact, the amount of food delivered to hungry families in those communities has increased by 30 percent.
Research from across the country shows that on-the-ground, mobile food banks are more effective. This model is now being employed in Manatee through Feeding Tampa Bay’s network of partners as it has in other counties with great success. Read more about mobile pantries here.
When did Feeding Tampa Bay tell the community about this change?
On April 20, Feeding Tampa Bay and The Food Bank of Manatee, a PLUS program of Meals on Wheels PLUS of Manatee, ended the provider services contract between the two organizations and announced this update in a press release.
Beginning May 31, Feeding Tampa Bay started conducting outreach to agencies in Manatee County and has made itself available to any organization with urgent needs.
Local organizations who would like to become a partner to Feeding Tampa Bay can email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Timeline of Events at a Glance: