The Tampa Bay Network to End Hunger (TBNEH) was founded in 2011 by 10 leaders from various direct service organizations, businesses and community circles who wanted to work collaboratively to help solve hunger in Hillsborough, Pasco and Pinellas Counties.
“Today, the network includes over 350 members who come together to tackle hunger in its tri-county service area,” said TBNEH’s program director, Toni Thomas. “TBNEH created the first and only Hunger Gap Map in the state of Florida, which shows food supply and demand in the network’s tri-county area. As a collective, the network identifies and implements solutions to hunger. Some of its programs include Meals On Wheels for Kids (MOW4Kids), which provides home-delivered groceries to children who are transportation disadvantaged or have a homebound parent, and Meals On Wheels St. Petersburg, which delivers meals to senior and homebound adults.”
Launched in 2020, the network’s MOW4Kids Holidays On Wheels (HOW) program delivers food for a full holiday meal, along with toys, to transportation-disadvantaged families—in partnership with Metropolitan Ministries—for the holidays.
“We hold the event once in November and once in December,” Thomas said. “Our second and final Holidays On Wheels event for the 2021 holiday season took place on Monday, December 13 in Hillsborough, Pinellas and Pasco Counties.”
The recent Giving Tuesday Event held on November 30 helped TBNEH raise money to fund its outreach programs. “We raised $2,725 to help provide holiday meals and gifts to the homes of transportation disadvantaged families,” Thomas said.
TBNEH is currently in need of volunteers during the holiday season to help them deliver food to those in need.
“We depend on volunteers for our weekly Meals On Wheels programs, but right now, our biggest need is volunteer drivers for holidays,” Thomas said. “We need nearly 100 additional volunteers to deliver holiday meals and toys for children in all three counties that we serve, especially Hillsborough. Volunteers can sign up at networktoendhunger.volunteerhub.com or contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org to learn more.”
For those who are unable to volunteer, donating is another great option. You can visit TBNEH’s website at www.networktoendhunger.org to learn more about the organization.