Above / Located at 1871 High Grove Lane, Loaves & Fishes Community Services aims to offer the community more benefits from combined resources, leadership says.

Loaves and FishesOn Saturday night, at Loaves & Fishes Community Services’ “Night to End Hunger” fundraiser held at Rich Harvest Farms in Sugar Grove, Loaves & Fishes Interim CEO and Chairman of the Board Mike Havala announced the combination of Loaves & Fishes and Naperville CARES.

This joining of forces, effective July 1, 2016, represents a major step for both organizations, each of which has created strong program models and will now integrate resources and programs to provide an elevated level of excellence in service to the community.

“This combination provides significant benefits to the clients who use the services of Loaves & Fishes and Naperville CARES, and ultimately, this benefits our community,” said Havala. “Our combined entity will be better positioned as a key leader in the non-profit community because we will be able to leverage the expertise of both organizations in addressing local hunger and poverty.”

Merger effective July 1, 2016

Naperville CARES employees will become Loaves & Fishes employees and four current members of the Naperville CARES Board of Directors will join the Loaves & Fishes Board of Directors.


Janet Derrick

“I couldn’t be more pleased to announce this merger and our future relocation to Loaves & Fishes,” said Janet Derrick, the current Executive Director of Naperville CARES. “Naperville CARES and Loaves & Fishes are well-aligned in mission, culture and values, plus we will be able to optimize the level of care offered in the community.”

The combined entity will be called Loaves & Fishes Community Services. The Naperville CARES emergency assistance and car program will be integrated with all non-food services offered by the agency and renamed the Loaves & Fishes CARES Programs. Havala will continue to lead the expanded organization as Chairman of the Board and will serve as Interim CEO until a permanent CEO is named. Derrick will become the Vice President of Loaves & Fishes CARES Programs.

“We are incredibly excited about now being able to work every day with Janet Derrick and the rest of the Naperville CARES team,” said Havala. “They are deservedly very well regarded in our community and are wonderful people.”

“I’m so impressed by the collaborative efforts of the boards and staff of both Loaves & Fishes Community Services and Naperville CARES for making this merger appear so seamless even though I know it has taken a great deal of work to get to this point,” said David McGowan, President of the DuPage Foundation. “I’ve watched both agencies grow their programs exponentially over the years and this is an opportunity to expand their efforts even further. This is a fantastic possibility for clients who will be able to access multiple services from the same location. I have a feeling this will serve as a model of success as others consider this path.”

Normal programming will continue for both organizations as this merger moves forward. Gradual changes will be made over the next six months as the organizations integrate.

Loaves & Fishes Community Services

Located at 1871 High Grove Lane in Naperville, Loaves & Fishes Community Services provides groceries and essential support services to more than 2,800 suburban Chicago families each month. Its multi-faceted model combines programs such as job search support, food assistance, skill-based classes and public benefit assistance, to both assist and empower clients to achieve self-sufficiency.

To learn more about making a donation, volunteering or getting help, visit www.loaves-fishes.org.

Naperville CARES

Headquartered in Naperville, IL, since 1999, Naperville CARES is where the community comes together to ensure all our neighbors have access to resources to meet their essential needs. The CARES Emergency Assistance Program, which provides emergency financial assistance to pay for basic needs like rent and utilities, is a very effective model for preventing homelessness in our community. The goal of the CARES Car Program is to help individuals maintain employment by providing reliable transportation by either providing a client with a donated vehicle or repairing client owned vehicles.

For more information, visit www.NapervilleCARES.org.

News submitted by Rebecca Raudabaugh, L.C. Williams & Associates, for Loaves & Fishes Community Services.