Stay up to date on all the exciting happenings at the Utah Food Bank.

Spring Break is often a time of relaxation and a chance for families to unwind and escape the stresses of school. However, for many Utah children, this break from school also means a break from the reliable food they receive through school meal programs. As families struggle to provide additional meals on already tight budgets, childhood hunger becomes even more pronounced during this time. 

The consequences of childhood hunger are severe and far-reaching. Children who experience food insecurity are more likely to face physical, emotional, and developmental challenges, impacting their ability to learn and succeed in school. 

In Utah, 10% of children statewide face hunger and the stress it brings. However, this percentage differs across the state’s regions. Specifically, in the southern and central areas where our Southern Distribution Center and Timpanogos Distribution Center operate, the rate of childhood hunger increases to 13%. In San Juan County, where we’ve established our new Southeastern Distribution Center, the percentage climbs to an alarming 20%. These figures emphasize the critical need for immediate action to tackle food insecurity statewide. 

At Utah Food Bank, we are committed to fighting childhood hunger through various programs.  

Our Mobile School Pantry program provides much-needed food distribution points for children and their families on a monthly basis at the end of the school day during the school year.  

Similarly, the Kids Cafe program offers evening meals to children at risk of hunger, providing food in a safe space for educational and recreational activities. Last year alone, the Kids Cafe program provided over 366,000 meals to children, demonstrating its significant impact on combating childhood hunger. 

As schools close for summer break, we offer the Summer Food Service Program, an extension of our Kids Cafe program. These free meals are available for youth up to the age of 18, at sites throughout Utah often located at libraries, parks, and even splash pads to allow kids to get out of the house, unplug, and play while also enjoying a nutritious free meal. Check back for more information.  

Addressing childhood hunger requires a collective effort to help keep the pantry and distribution centers stocked throughout Utah. Hosting a food drive or a fundraiser is a great way to support Utahns facing hunger. Individuals can also support their communities by volunteering at one of our many warehouses or one of our 245 partner agencies. By coming together to support these initiatives, we can ensure that fewer children go to bed hungry, not just during Spring Break, but every day of the year. 

If you or someone you know is facing food insecurity, call 2-1-1 Information and Referral to learn about resources in your local community that can help meet your needs, or click here to get help. 

Hunger doesn’t take a break, and neither can we. Don’t wait; take action today. 


On March 16th, faith-based congregations, organizations, and residents across Utah are teaming up with Utah Food Bank for the third annual statewide Feed Utah to support our mission of Fighting Hunger Statewide. This food drive is crucial to help restock quickly emptying shelves, and we are asking for everyone’s help!

It’s easy to get involved! Be on the lookout for red and white door hangers at your home this week.  Fill any bag or box with non-perishable food donations and leave them near your front door before 9 a.m. on Saturday, March 16th, for pick-up. Most-needed food items include canned meats (beef stew, chili), peanut butter, boxed meals, chili, and canned fruits and vegetables.

Your donations will be picked up by local volunteers and church organizations starting at 9 a.m. Saturday and delivered to Utah Food Bank and partner agencies.

Drop-off locations include Utah Food Bank’s Salt Lake, Springville, Blanding, and St. George warehouses, all Macey’s Grocery and Lin’s locations throughout Utah, and participating pantry locations. For all Feed Utah donation drop-off site locations, please click HERE.

Governor Spencer Cox has officially declared March 16, 2024, as “Feed Utah Day” to raise awareness of this crucial cause.

“Think about your children’s classroom with maybe 25 students, and the idea that potentially three of them will struggle with hunger throughout the week. And it’s unacceptable,” said Gov. Spencer Cox.

Your contributions will help feed the estimated 317,000 Utahns and 1 in 10 Utah kids facing food insecurity.

Here’s how you can help:

  • Leave your donations outside your front door by 9:00 a.m. on March 16th.
  • Most-needed items include canned meats, peanut butter, boxed meals, and canned fruits and vegetables. Remember, donated items should be non-perishable, commercially packaged, nutritious, and please, no glass items.
  • Scan the QR code on the door hangers to donate funds or do so directly online HERE.
  • Sign up to volunteer to help receive food donations on March 16th  HERE.

Ginette Bott, President & CEO of Utah Food Bank, emphasizes the ongoing need for support as we prepare for one of the hungriest summers yet.

Your participation matters. Let’s show our support for our neighbors who are unsure of where their next meal will come from. Together, we can make Feed Utah 2024 a huge success! For further information, click HERE.

Amidst remarks and traditional Navajo Blessings, two ribbon-cutting ceremonies unfolded, marking the beginning of a new chapter in the fight against hunger statewide. We are thrilled to announce the opening of two new pantries, each spanning an impressive 4,000 square feet, strategically located in Montezuma Creek and Monument Valley, on the Navajo Nation.  

These pantries will be supported by Utah Food Bank Southeastern Distribution Center in Blanding, which includes an attached 1,800-square-foot pantry. Our SEDC warehouse has refrigerator and freezer space, a critical addition aimed at increasing the availability of fresh food in the area. 

The decision to expand services was driven by the pressing need within the Navajo Nation. Classified as a food desert, residents often faced daunting journeys of several hours to access basic food resources. In San Juan County, rates of hunger surpass the state average, with childhood hunger being particularly prevalent. The statistics highlight the urgency of our commitment to this multi-pronged expansion project. 

The opening of these pantries signifies more than just access to food; it symbolizes a lifeline for communities long grappling with food insecurity. By creating job and volunteer opportunities within the pantries, we are not only providing essential resources but also empowering individuals to contribute meaningfully to their communities. This initiative promises stability and reliability in operating hours, a welcome change for many. 

“I have always had to drive across three state lines just to buy a loaf of bread,” – said a San Juan county resident in attendance.

These facilities are set to become crucial resources for residents facing food insecurity in the southeastern region and will be open to the public in the coming weeks. As we commemorate this significant occasion, let us remember that the journey towards Fighting Hunger Statewide is ongoing. With each pantry opened and each meal provided, we take a step closer to realizing that vision. Together, we embrace the promise of a brighter, more nourished tomorrow. 

In a significant stride towards addressing the critical issue of food insecurity in San Juan County and the Navajo Nation, Utah Food Bank proudly announces the official opening of our new Southeastern Distribution Center in Blanding. Spanning an impressive 18,000 square feet, this facility stands as a testament to our commitment to meeting the unique needs of this region. While we have been actively serving San Juan County and the Navajo Nation for over three decades, the necessity for a more robust approach became evident – dispatching a lone truck on a weekly basis to remote areas was not keeping up with the amount of need in the area. 

San Juan County residents face significantly higher rates of hunger compared to the state average, with a staggering 17% reporting food insecurity, in stark contrast to the statewide figure of 10%. Sadly, childhood hunger is even more prevalent, with 20% of children uncertain about their next meal – a figure that is double the statewide average. Recognizing the urgency of the situation, we took a proactive stance, leading to the establishment of this new facility and infrastructure to serve the area for generations to come. 

Utah Food Bank’s Southeastern Distribution Center in Blanding is a comprehensive facility, comprising an 18,000-square-foot distribution center with an attached 1,800-square-foot pantry. Additionally, the facility is equipped with refrigerator and freezer space, a critical addition aimed at increasing the availability of fresh food in the area. This facility not only serves existing partner agencies in the region but also acts as a support base for two new Utah Food Bank pantries scheduled to open in March in Monument Valley and Montezuma Creek. 

One of the significant barriers to food security in the Navajo Nation has been the long driving distances to essential food outlets. Classified as a food desert, residents often travel for several hours to access basic resources. With the opening of these three pantries, we will strategically address this challenge by ensuring consistent access to food resources and reducing the burden of travel for local communities.  

Utah Food Bank Southeastern Distribution Center is poised to become a community hub by generating jobs for the area and offering volunteer opportunities. This facility aims to foster a sense of shared responsibility and collaboration among residents, which will not only strengthen community bonds but also empower individuals to actively contribute to the well-being of their neighbors. 

This new construction represents more than just a facility; it is a beacon of hope for the communities it serves. By addressing the unique challenges faced by San Juan County and the Navajo Nation, this multi-pronged expansion is poised to make a lasting impact on the lives of those grappling with food insecurity. As it opens its doors, Utah Food Bank Southeastern Distribution Center is providing nourishment and sowing the seeds of positive change in the heart of the region where Utah’s indigenous communities call home. 

With a ceremonial ribbon cutting, our President and CEO, Ginette Bott, officially opened our new Timpanogos Distribution Center in Springville, strategically located to help Utah Food Bank better serve the 71,670 central Utah residents, and 1 in 8 central Utah children, who face hunger. From this facility, we will serve central Utah, which encompasses 11 counties.

Boasting 77,032 square feet, this facility offers 50,364 square feet of warehouse and commercial kitchen space, and 26,668 square feet of office and conference room space. Its location in Springville provides easy access to major truck routes and the facility will offer volunteer opportunities, public donation drop-offs, and provide local jobs. It will also enable Utah Food Bank to offer direct service programs previously unavailable in central Utah, while facilitating the expansion of current programs in the area.

Utah Governor Spencer J. Cox joined us at the ribbon-cutting ceremony, sharing how his childhood experiences shaped a personal connection to the cause. Recalling family trips to a bulk food store where his mother used a calculator to account for every penny, Cox highlighted the importance of understanding one’s roots and the genuine need for sustenance. He remarked on Utah’s generosity but acknowledged the challenge of remembering the true extent of need, emphasizing the vital role the new facility would play in keeping more donations within the state.

Cox also described the heart and hands of our logo as a symbolic representation of Utahns, praising the state’s compassionate nature while also acknowledging the hands-on approach that distinguishes Utahns – a blend of heart and hands.

Springville Mayor Matthew Packard also joined us that day and conveyed gratitude for the visibility of the Timpanogos Distribution Center, situated prominently along the freeway, making a statement to all passers-by that Utah County, and especially the city of Springville, are proud to show their commitment to helping their community.

The event also provided an opportunity to extend appreciation to the individuals and families who played a crucial role in making the Timpanogos Distribution Center a reality. Special recognition was given to the Larry H. and Gail Miller Family Foundation for supporting this project, and to Mike and Jan Littlefield, whose generous donation helped build and equip the Kids Cafe commercial kitchen in the facility. We also heard from Layton Construction and Beecher Walker Architecture, whose guidance, support, and vision carried us through the project.

This facility is the first of several that we will open in 2024, including a warehouse with an attached pantry in Blanding, two pantries on the Navajo Nation, and a pantry in Hurricane. As we continue to expand our footprint across the state, the Timpanogos Distribution Center stands as a testament to the resilience, generosity, and community spirit that defines Utahns.


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