Thanks to the Community Food Bank, local grocery stores, and many generous donations, we are able to offer many basic perishable and non-perishable food items to our clients and replenish our shelves when supplies run low. These food items include milk, eggs, frozen meat, prepared foods, fresh produce, yogurt, dairy products, canned fruits and vegetables, breads and cereals, and toiletries and household products.
Residents may visit twice a month and will receive one or more food boxes on the first visit (depending on family size), and bread, milk, eggs, produce and meat, if available, on both visits. On the second visit, residents also may choose from a variety of canned fruits, soups, vegetables and dry goods.
Our Market Days are held on Thursdays from 9 a.m.-1 p.m. and Saturdays from 10 a.m.-noon.
Residents may register for SNAP (food stamps) during our Thursday Market Day.
SNAP offers nutrition assistance to millions of eligible, low-income individuals and families and provides economic benefits to communities. SNAP is the largest program in the domestic hunger safety net. The Food and Nutrition Service works with State agencies, nutrition educators, and neighborhood and faith-based organizations to ensure that those eligible for nutrition assistance can make informed decisions about applying for the program and can access benefits. FNS also works with State partners and the retail community to improve program administration and ensure program integrity
We administer The Emergency Food Assistance Program (TEFAP) for our area through the Arizona Department of Economic Security (DES). TEFAP is a federal program that provides supplemental food to low-income individuals and families.
Families qualify to receive TEFAP boxes if they are within 185 percent of the federal poverty guidelines. Emergency food boxes are offered once monthly to qualified individuals who can provide proof of residence.
Families may receive up to three boxes of food, depending on the number of people in the household. The food boxes usually contain rice, beans, macaroni and cheese, cereal, canned fruit or vegetables, peanut butter, and soup.
Many studies have shown a strong correlation between hunger and academic performance in students. Hunger and food insecurity can present significant barriers to a child’s academic education and result in behavioral problems at school, both of which make them less likely to be successful as adults.
Our Backpack Program addresses this problem by providing weekend food bags to nearly 300 nutritionally at-risk school students each year. This ensures that these children have meals to carry them through the weekend until returning to school and a daily lunch program. Each backpack contains a variety of items, such as shelf-stable milk, canned meats, applesauce or canned fruit, cereal, fresh fruit and vegetable and a nutritional bar.
Schools currently or previously benefiting from our program include Sahuarita Primary and Intermediate Schools, Continental Elementary School, Mission School in the San Xavier District of the Tohono O’odhamand, and Summit View Elementary.
The backpack program service is funded by the Pima County Community Action Agency and the Arizona Department of Economic Security.
We partner with the Community Food Bank of Southern Arizona to operate a satellite pantry for Summit View residents twice a month from 3-5 pm on the second and fourth Mondays at the Summit View Elementary School. Annually, we distribute more than 66,000 pounds of non-perishable food and fresh produce and serve more than 7,000 residents at this location.
One-third of winter produce from Mexico comes through the Mariposa port of entry in Nogales. The many produce distributors north of the border must determine if that produce still will be fresh after being trucked across the country. If the produce will spoil in transit, the distributors share it with food banks throughout southern Arizona, which allows us to give peak quality produce to our clients and friends in the community. This also avoids huge amounts of waste and high landfill costs for the producers. Everyone wins!
At the Sahuarita Food Bank, the seasonal produce distribution begins in late fall and continues through June on Wednesday afternoons from 2:30-5:00 p.m. Anyone in the community is eligible for the produce, and many share the generous amounts they receive with neighbors, church members and family. (Due to COVID-19, the Winter Produce program is temporarily paused.)