The Salvation Army, Philabundance, Amazon Fresh Team Up to Feed Low-Income Families
Food not only brings people together - it also brings together partnerships. In West Philadelphia, a partnership between The Salvation Army, Amazon Fresh, and Philabundance is feeding 150-200 families a week.
What started as a call in 2020 from Amazon Fresh to The Salvation Army Philadelphia West Corps to offer milk on the verge of expiration to The Salvation Army’s clients in need, turned into a lasting partnership in which families can come to The Salvation Army every week to receive all kinds of food donated by Amazon Fresh. Philabundance, a non-profit food bank serving the Philadelphia and Delaware Valley region, picks up the boxes of food from Amazon Fresh and takes it to The Salvation Army in West Philadelphia to handle and distribute to local community members in need.
“The boxes include a variety of things - anything you’d find in a grocery store,” said Major Celestin Nkounkou, Corps Officer for The Salvation Army Philadelphia West Corps. “Produce, canned goods, ready-to-eat meat, frozen food, drinks … it means a lot to the people who come to receive the food.”
Philabundance visits The Salvation Army’s site after hours during the week to deliver the boxes of perishables and non-perishables from a local Amazon warehouse and organize the food. Community members in need can visit The Salvation Army twice a week, on Wednesdays and Saturdays, to receive the food and other goods, as well as abundant love and prayerful compassion.
“Philabundance is thankful for our partnership with Amazon Fresh and The Salvation Army,” said Loree D. Jones, Chief Executive Officer of Philabundance. “With Amazon Fresh’s support of our Retail Rescue donation program, we delivered 254,000 pounds of fresh produce to the Salvation Army Philadelphia West Corps last year. We are thrilled to hear our neighbors love the quality and quantity of donations they have received. We believe this program is of tremendous value for communities with limited access to fresh, healthy produce.”
In one day, The Salvation Army can see up to 60 new people come to its West Corps site to receive the food, according to Major Nkounkou. Through Greater Philadelphia, The Salvation Army has served more than 833,000 meals in 2021 to food insecure families and individuals.
“It means a lot because we serve those from low-income communities,” said Major Nkounkou. “To be able to receive the food, help the community out with a non-traditional food pantry, and see new people all the time is a blessing. And, it’s a blessing to us here to be able to show the love.”
Local individuals and families in need of food can visit www.saphilly.org.