Northern Community Food Security Team
In February 2018, the Wake Forest Board of Commissioners endorsed Wake County’s Comprehensive Food Security Plan making the Town the first in Wake County to join our area’s local food council, the Capital Area Food Network (CAFN). The plan is designed to move the county towards strategies that address hunger now and in the future.
The Northern Community Food Security Team (NCFST) was created to develop and launch a viable food security plan for northern Wake County that aligns with the CAFN plan. The Wake Forest Board of Commissioners charged NCFST with enlisting community members, food security organizations, resource experts, and other stakeholders to develop activities, policies, and partnerships that will move the county towards food security and a sustainable food future.
NECC Community Garden & Gathering Space
Visit the Northeast Community Coalition website to learn more about the NECC Community Garden, 504 N. Taylor St.
Volunteers are needed to make the garden a success. Please sign up and encourage your friends and neighbors to volunteer their time.
Garden hours: Thursdays, 11 am-3 pm
Volunteer days: First and third Saturdays of each month
Wake County grant extends the NCFST Hub to December feed hungry residents
In the March 2021, NCFST Food Hub distributed 480 perishable boxes and 400 non-perishable boxes. These represent ~12,000 pounds of food. Need remained high in March, with distribution partners experiencing record demand. Our partners report somewhat lower demand in the month of April, but still greater than pre-Covid. Wake County has continued to fund the Food Hub, thru June 30, albeit with less funds than previously. This has caused the Hub to have less food to distribute.
We attribute the lower demand to the distribution of stimulus checks (as we had a similar dip in demand when the previous round of checks circulated), and also to the fledgling economic recovery as jobs are returning. We anticipate that as the eviction moratorium lapses that we will see demand increase steeply.
Wake County has approved the Northern Community Food Security Team (NCFST) as a Community Food Hub in the Northern Human Services Region and awarded the partner agency over $65,000 to support ongoing food relief efforts in our area.
The NCFST is one of a handful of Community Food Hubs located throughout the county that food insecure residents can visit to obtain food, including groceries and fresh produce. Community Food Hub partner agencies also provide or coordinate community deliveries of products to those who are home-bound or lack transportation. Future plans call for coordination with other organizations to provide additional resources, such as SNAP & WIC assistance, backpack buddies, personal hygiene kits and school supplies.
The NCFST Food Hub currently distributes produce and groceries on the second and third Saturday of each month from 10 a.m.-1 p.m. at Tri-Area Ministry Food Pantry, 149 E. Holding Ave. The hub also distributes produce and non-perishables from the former SunTrust Building, 353 S. White St., to its many distribution partners, including the Northeast Community Coalition, North Wake Church, Hope House, Oak Level Christian Church, and Glory Tabernacle Food Pantry – among others.
Wake County has networked with the Interfaith Food Shuttle, Food Bank of Central and Eastern NC and area produce vendors to secure food supplies to support hubs. Funding for each hub is based on the scale of its operation and the number of Wake county residents below the 200% poverty level within a two- to five-mile region. The NCFST will receive more than $90,000 for the period from September 1-December 31 to cover costs associated with staff, delivery, facilities, equipment, outreach and food costs. This program has been extended to June 2021.
The NCFST is a consortium of local organizations whose mission is to ensure food security in the North County community. Founded in 2018 in conjunction with the Town of Wake Forest adoption of the Wake County Food Security Plan, NCFST counts more than a dozen food pantries, faith-based organizations, businesses, concerned citizens among its' participants, in addition to support from the Town of Wake Forest and Wake County.
Wake Forest Community Meals - Meals are served Mondays at Hope House from 5 p.m. - 6 p.m. and Wednesdays at Olive Branch Baptist Church from 6 p.m. - 7 p.m. They offer take home meals, casseroles, produce and groceries.
2021 NCFST Quarterly Meetings
The NCFST will host virtual meetings on the following Thursdays from Noon - 2 pm. All are welcome to attend. Please email for the link.
Youth-Led Circle Committee
The Youth-Led Circle is made up of middle & high school-aged students who are interested in food equity and overall advocate to better our food system. Contact Lisa.Pham@WakeGov.com for questions. Sign up!
Wake County Smart Start - NC Pre-K
WCSS is now accepting applications for Wake County Pre-Kindergarten (Pre-K) Programs including NC Pre-K, Title I and Head Start. Wake County Pre-K programs are publicly funded. If you live in Wake County and have a child who will be four years old by Aug. 31, 2020, then you are eligible. Apply with Wake County Smart Start for this FREE program!
Weekend Meals Program
In partnership with the WCPSS lunch/breakfast drive by pick up, we have partnered with several local non-profits to assist with food bags/boxes of shelf stable non-perishable items. Stop by the Northern Regional Center (350 E. Holding St., Wake Forest, NC 27587) every Friday between 10:45AM - 12:45PM to receive a free Weekend Meals.
Town of Wake Forest donated pickup truck
The Town donated a truck to help deliver food and help with gleaning efforts.
Established an online volunteer registration form to help recruit volunteers for the various programs.
Rise Against Hunger
This event was a meal packing event at the Wake Forest Boys & Girls. They packed several thousand meals and helped to stock the Tri Area Ministry, as volunteers were asked to bring donations. There were about 200 volunteers from local community groups.
The Triangle Blessing Box has partnered with and is located at the Hope House
Our Mission at the Triangle Blessing Box, is to provide a 24/7 judgement free pantry, where community members are encouraged to take what they need and leave what they can. There is also a lockbox inside where people can write specific requests, and the Blessing Box team work to fill that need. The Blessing Box is also aimed at connecting neighbors on a more personal level to help bridge the gap in our community with those in need and those who want to help. The address for the Hope House is 334 North Allen Road, Wake Forest, NC 27587.
Approved for the Alston-Massenburg to be a Family Summer Feeding Program
More details forthcoming regarding this partnership with Wake Forest Parks & Recreation Department, Olive Branch Baptist Church, the Northeast Community Coalition and others. For more information, contact Joy Shillingsburg.
Partnership with the Northeast Community Coalition (NECC), Wake Forest Parks & Recreation Department Cooking Classes at the Alston-Massenburg Center
EFNEP is leading this cooking class that is at capacity with 25 participants. There will be more classes in the future.
Feed the Community food distribution under the Pavilion at Alston-Massenburg Center
On March 16, Food Bank in Raleigh delivered 10-12,000 pounds of food and it was distributed to over 100 families. Stay tuned for more dates in the future.
Potato Drop at St. Catherine's of Siena
Hundreds of volunteers worked together to bag about 25,000 pounds of white potatoes. It was a partnership between local churches, food pantries, youth groups and military/vets - at the end of the event all waste and pallets were delivered to a local community garden.
Town donates laptop computers to local food pantries
One of the immediate needs identified in the CAFN Plan was for laptops at local food pantries. In response, the Town recently donated four (4) laptops to local food pantries.
Developed a Waste Mitigation & Composting Team
The team will be kicking off its educational efforts at Dirt Day in downtown Wake Forest, on Saturday, April 6, starting at 10 am.
The Northern Community Food Security Team partners with local organizations to offer several volunteer opportunities throughout the year. Volunteers are needed for a variety of activities and initiatives.
Food insecurity is a major issue across our county, state, country as well as internationally. We want to broaden participation in the area Hunger Ministry. If you are part of an organization that wants to find out more or join the coalition, contact Andrew Brown, Jr.
Volunteer to sort and distribute food at Tri-Area Ministry (TAM), Hope House, Back Pack Buddies, St. Catherine's of Siena, Richland Creek and other area organizations. Have extra produce you're your garden? Donate it to local pantries! For more information, contact Andrew Brown, Jr.
Harvest and bag sweet potatoes, corn and other crops on farms that donate produce for charity near Wake Forest during October for Yam Jam as well as all year around. The Society of St. Andrew coordinates these events. For more information, contact Dave Eaton.
Sort anything from canned goods to frozen meet and veggies at the regional food bank. Generally 2nd Thursday of each month from 1-3 pm and once a quarter from 6-8 pm on Wednesday evening. For more information, contact Dennis Beemer at 630-319-1155.
Volunteer at a growing number of gardens. For more information on the Wake Forest Baptist Church's Community Connections Garden contact Gene Cross, the Wake Forest Presbyterian Church Community Garden contact Melanie Floyd or the Spring Street Garden contact Tilde Caudle.
The Wake Forest Area Hunger Ministry is a coalition of churches, civic organizations and service groups building a community-wide Hunger Ministry for North East Wake County and Youngsville. Volunteers are needed for a variety of activities and initiatives. For more information, email George Shaw or call 919-761-5295.