40 Years of Solving Hunger and Empowering Neighbors
40 Years of Solving Hunger and Empowering Neighbors

Northern Illinois Food Bank Marks 40 Years

Kane County Connects Staff 2/23/2023 7:00AM

Northern Illinois Food Bank (NIFB) is marking their 40th anniversary of solving hunger and empowering neighbors throughout Northern Illinois.

The Food Bank was founded in 1983 by Sister Rosemarie Burian of Wheaton, IL. She witnessed people in her community suffering from food insecurity and knew there was a surplus of food available. With this knowledge and a team of volunteers she started the Food Bank.

The first location was at 170 Easy Street in Carol Stream and named Bethlehem Center. In the first month, the Food Bank delivered 7,000 pounds of food.

Today, the Food Bank works with a network of more than 900 food pantries, soup kitchens and feeding programs to provide 78 million meals a year to neighbors across 13 counties in suburban and rural Northern Illinois.

With the help of donors, volunteers and community partners, the Food Bank distributes perishable and non-perishable food to 450,000 neighbors every month.

“Over the past 40 years, a lot has changed but our mission remains the same, to provide healthy and nutritious food to neighbors experiencing food insecurity, with dignity, equity and convenience,” said Julie Yurko, President and CEO, Northern Illinois Food Bank. “We are so grateful for our founder, Sister Rosemarie, past and present board members, our donors, volunteers and community partners. We could not have come this far without their support and generosity. Looking ahead, there is still more work to do. We are taking steps to ensure the Food Bank remains focused on serving our neighbors through innovations and programs.”

A new website design makes it easier to locate food programs, donate and volunteer, and includes a 40th anniversary webpage. The dedicated webpage will feature neighbor and volunteer stories, historical timeline, tribute video, images of Sister Rosemarie, and an interactive tool for users to share memories or ask questions about the Food Bank.

To learn more about the Food Bank’s history, how to get groceries, donate or volunteer, visit: SolveHungerToday.org.

### ABOUT THE NORTHERN ILLINOIS FOOD BANK For the past 40 years, Northern Illinois Food Bank has been dedicated to solving hunger and empowering neighbors. Our vision at Northern Illinois Food Bank is for everyone in Northern Illinois to have the food they need to thrive. A 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization and proud member of Feeding America, we serve our neighbors in 13 counties with dignity, equity and convenience, providing 250,000 meals a day. We bring together manufacturers, local and corporate grocers, area farmers, corporations, foundations, and individuals who donate food and funding, and each week nearly 1,000 volunteers help us evaluate, repack, and distribute food. We also proudly partner with more than 900 food pantries, soup kitchens, shelters, and youth and senior feeding programs to provide nutritious food and resources. Our distribution centers are located in Geneva, Lake Forest, Rockford and Joliet. Find out how you can get help, volunteer, donate or get involved at SolveHungerToday.org, or follow us on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and LinkedIn.

Source/ Media Release Northern Illinois Food Bank
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