Mission: We are dedicated to helping those in need of food and clothing in Santa Fe and the surrounding area in a non-political manner which is in accordance with section 501[c] of the IRS code. All services are free to our clients.
Geographic areas served: Santa Fe and surrounding area
Programs: In the past year bienvenidos outreach has seen a slight decrease in the number of food boxes distributed (15,921 for fy 14-15 vs. 17,943 distributed in fy 13-14) and saw a decrease in the number of lunches distributed in our lunch bag for the homeless project (15,303 for fy 14-15 vs. 18,468 in fy 13-14). Of these clients, there were a total of 663 families (1,844 people total) who applied for assistance with us for the first time. Food donations were down this past year again, primarily due to fewer large food drives by schools, churches and other establishments, but we were able to maintain our food distribution because of the variety food we purchased from the food depot at reduced prices using donations/grants earmarked solely for food purchases. Healthier food choices and reasonable pricing available through our food depot and an increase in healthy beverages from pepsi (low sugar juices, bottled water) allowed us to continue our smart breakfasts = smart kids project. Other projects include free clothing, house wares and books to our clients (there were 7,980 visits to our clothing room in fy 14-15), a decrease of 2,541 visits from the prior year. The christmas gifts project for children (378 children receiving 756 gifts) continues to be popular (numbers slightly down due to children who have gone above the age-limit for inclusion in the project). The decreases in the number of people we have helped can mostly be attributed to people moving out of the area and people who no longer need our services as they have found gainful employment.
I have been a volunteer for about 13 months and a board member for about 4 or 5 months. Besides an excellent director and assistant, all of us (30-40 I think) are volunteers. It is a very caring place but we all work very hard to serve our many clients.
Our main challenge is lack of space (and funds) to serve the many hundreds of families and homeless we help.
Bienvenidos Outreach has served the Santa Fe community for over 20 years offering food and clothing to those families in need. I have always been impressed with the courtesy and the hard work done by both paid staff and volunteers.