The second winner of the 2020 Local Focus. Lasting Impact.™ Moments Recognition is Project SHARE – a program developed by Feeding Northeast Florida. Feeding Northeast Florida is being recognized for their outstanding collaboration during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

As Northeast Florida began to experience the effects of closures related to the COVID-19 pandemic, the number of food pantries open to the public sharply declined. Typically, Feeding Northeast Florida services more than 250 active faith-based and nonprofit food pantries across an 8-county region. Closures affected many of these organizations, and the number of pantries who were able to continue their operations dropped to 84. 

Realizing the need to find new methods to distribute food, Feeding Northeast Florida CEO Susan King reached out to Florida Blue, developing a plan to keep their campus kitchen staff employed to prepare thousands of hot meals for seniors through an innovative collaboration dubbed Project SHARE. With funding from Florida Blue, Truist and other foundations, King then turned to The Black Sheep Group, hiring their kitchen teams as 1099 contract employees. By hiring experienced culinary professionals and partnering with local commercial kitchens, Feeding Northeast Florida has created a unique opportunity to sustain the nutritional health of our community. 

“We have made a difference for the chefs and staff of the 9 restaurants whose jobs we maintain as 1099 contractors. Beyond the meals that are sustaining the nutritional health of our community, we are also supplying washable and reusable masks through our contacts with Dr. Saumil Oza of Ascension St. Vincent’s. Our plan is that every low income, food insecure person receiving food or meals through our programs will also receive face masks that they might not otherwise be able to find, helping to reduce their chance of infection and flattening the curve.”

Susan King, CEO Feeding Northeast Florida

About the 2020 Local Focus. Lasting Impact.™ Moments Recognition Program

This post is the second of a six-part series. Over the next 5 weeks, The Nonprofit Center will recognize a total of seven local nonprofit organizations for their programs and services that have created a lasting impact in our community through the 2020 Local Focus. Lasting Impact.™ Moments Recognition Program

Check out previous winner here: Week 1 – Youth Crisis Center COVID-19 Innovation

In 2011, the Nonprofit Center of Northeast Florida, The Community Foundation for Northeast Florida and the Jessie Ball duPont Fund, partnered to create the the Local Focus. Lasting Impact.™ initiative to help nonprofits connect with the community and each other. The initiative includes marketing materials for nonprofits to use as well as the signature awards program to highlight the achievements of nonprofits in the Northeast Florida area.

In 2020, due to the unique circumstances created by COVID-19, The Nonprofit Center expanded the program to recognize five Local Focus. Lasting Impact.™ moments in addition to two Local Focus. Lasting Impact.™ awards in the categories of Collective Power and Social Innovation. Each of the five organizations recognized with the 2020 Local Focus. Lasting Impact.™ Moments received a $750 cash award, sponsored by Jessie Ball duPont Reflective Practice Endowment Fund at The Community Foundation For Northeast Florida. The Collective Power and Social Innovation award winners each received a $1,250 cash prize, sponsored by Florida Blue, a documentary film donated by WJCT, and an additional cash prize of $1000 to create and deliver a Learning Lab, sponsored by Community First Credit Union. 

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