Revere-Based Nonprofit to Raise Money for Local Hunger Relief Programs
On May 1, staff, volunteers, congregants and community members of the First Congregational Church of Revere will be among thousands of virtual participants to lace up for Project Bread’s 54th annual Walk for Hunger. For the third consecutive year, the Revere-based nonprofit will participate in the event through The Commonwealth Program which gives 60 percent of all funds raised by teams from likeminded organizations and agencies back to support their own hunger relief programs, with the remaining 40 percent applied to the statewide anti-hunger effort. To date, Project Bread has awarded more than $13,000 in grants to the First Congregational Church of Revere Food Pantry through the Commonwealth Program.
Historically, the Walk for Hunger, the nation’s oldest continual pledge walk, takes place the first Sunday of May on the Boston Common. The 2022 fundraiser will be the third event to be done virtually and is expected to raise more than $1 million to support Project Bread’s work to increase food access for people of all ages in Massachusetts.
“Currently, one in five Massachusetts households with children is struggling without enough to eat and that number jumps dramatically for Black, brown, and immigrant households,” said Erin McAleer, Project Bread CEO. “Participating in the Walk for Hunger is one way in which residents can take action to fund school and community meal sites and Massachusetts’ only statewide hotline that connects residents with a range of food resources, including SNAP assistance. We can drive community change together.”
Money raised through the Walk is funding Project Bread’s work to ensure kids have reliable access to food, directly helping individuals and families, and advocating at the state and federal levels for expedited and efficient relief for those in need. Walk funds are also supporting community organizations, like the First Congregational Church of Revere Food Pantry, that are helping residents to access food now and grants to ensure communities have the resources necessary to sustain and grow local anti-hunger programs. In 2021, 28 nonprofits participated in The Commonwealth Program and raised more than $165,000 to support their own work.
Founded in 1983, the First Congregational Church of Revere Food Pantry serves as an emergency food provider for food insecure families in the community. Pre-pandemic, the nonprofit served approximately 60 to 80 families per week, distributing 6,000 to 8,000 pounds of food per month provided by the Greater Boston Food Bank. Today, the food pantry serves an estimated 350 to 400 families weekly, offering 60,000 to 70,000 pounds of food monthly. The need has never been greater as families continue to struggle with job security and the rising costs of living, food, gas and home heating. The team has a long history of participating in the Walk for Hunger even before the Commonwealth Program launched in 2020. This year, the team, which is actively accepting community members to join, aims to raise $2,000 to help fund the purchase of food and other supplies to keep the pantry running.
“Project Bread has been a longtime partner of ours and of the City of Revere to help provide food to residents of all ages, through school meals, the Summer Eats program and our pantry,” said Wendy Baur, director of the First Congregational Church of Revere Food Pantry, who for years volunteered at the registration table for the event when it was held in-person on the Boston Common. “Participating in the event is one way to help our neighbors in need. You never know who is struggling in our community. You can help by joining our Walk team.”
This year’s event will include virtual programming with McAleer, elected officials, as well as walkers and volunteers posting and sharing their experiences along their neighborhood routes and why they are walking to help end hunger. Families with kids, individuals and teams of corporate employees are encouraged to find creative ways to connect virtually and fundraise together.
To register for the event and create a personal or team fundraising page for The Walk for Hunger or to make a donation, visit projectbread.org/walk or call (617) 723-5000.There is no registration fee or fundraising minimum to participate. Participants who raise $500 or more are recognized as Heart & Sole walkers, and receive access to personalized fundraising support, exclusive event gear, and invitations to events.
People experiencing food insecurity should call into Project Bread’s toll-free FoodSource Hotline (1-800-645-8333), which provides confidential assistance to connect with food resources, including SNAP benefits, in 180 languages and for the hearing impaired. For more information, visit: www.projectbread.org/get-help.
About Project Bread
Project Bread is the leading statewide anti-hunger organization in Massachusetts. Beginning in 1969 with the first Walk for Hunger, the nonprofit focuses on driving systemic change to ensure people of all ages have reliable access to healthy food. Project Bread works collaboratively across sectors to create innovative solutions to end hunger and improve lives across the Commonwealth. For more information, visit: www.projectbread.org.
About First Congregational Church of Revere Food Pantry
The First Congregational Church of Revere Food Pantry is an emergency food provider for food insecure families in our community. Located at The Revere Food Hub at 200 Winthrop Ave., the pantry is open every Wednesday night from 6:15 to 8:00 p.m. Clients may pick up food twice a month. Clients arriving by car drive up, no street parking is allowed. Only one member per household can register. For more information, visit: www.firstcongrevere.org/food-pantry.