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Naperville
Wednesday, August 17, 2022

Passion and Purpose at Loaves & Fishes

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As we observe our 35th Anniversary, we’re looking back at all that has transpired in the life of Loaves & Fishes, while we carefully craft a meaningful future. Over those three and a half decades, the thread that has been woven throughout is passion. In 1984, a few people passionate about helping neighbors in need stepped up at St. Raphael Catholic Church and Loaves & Fishes was born. As the need for services grew, so did the response, through a couple of moves to larger facilities, hundreds of volunteers joining to assist, and the addition of the CARES programs to help people become self-sufficient. With 1 in 5 in DuPage County now living in poverty or with a low-income, such passion is more important than ever.

What does that passion look like today? It usually begins before dawn as devoted Loaves & Fishes staff and volunteers get ready to drive off to collect healthy food from our food rescue partners. Numerous volunteers are eagerly awaiting the donated fresh fruits and vegetable to sort them; then others place them in coolers or in the grocery market. At the same time, additional volunteers are handling registration, the CARES programs or are serving clients in the market. Through bone-chilling weather and the hottest of days, other volunteers are working as parking attendants. They direct dozens of vehicles that are part of the day and help clients load their groceries into their cars. Even special event volunteers keep their focus squarely on the clients.

The purpose of Loaves & Fishes is clear: To provide healthy food and impactful programs to promote self-sufficiency. The commitment exhibited by more than 1,500 dedicated volunteers, devoted staff, and generous donors is what brings that purpose to life. We hope our passion becomes yours – struggling families are counting on you.

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Nancy Wiersum
Nancy Wiersumhttp://www.loaves-fishes.org/
Nancy Wiersum is Vice President of Advancement at Loaves & Fishes Community Services and can be contacted at nwiersum@loaves-fishes.org. Visit www.loaves-fishes.org for more information.

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