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2018 Top-Rated Nonprofit

Second Harvest Food Bank of Santa Clara and San Mateo Counties

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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Food, Food Banks & Pantries, Food Programs

Mission: Lead our community to ensure that anyone who needs a healthy meal can get one.

Results: We are the largest nonprofit provider of food in Santa Clara and San Mateo counties; nearly 1 in 10 people in our region receives some of their food from Second Harvest Food Bank. Last year we provided more than 65 million pounds of food to a network of 309 community-based organizations at 985 sites across both counties.

Target demographics: An estimated 700,000 Silicon Valley residents – 1 in 4 – are at risk of hunger.

Direct beneficiaries per year: An average of 260,000 people each month. More than half the people we serve are seniors and children.

Geographic areas served: Santa Clara County, San Mateo County

Programs: Grocery programs, partner programs, CalFresh outreach, school and summer meal support, nutrition education and advocacy.

Community Stories

119 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Had a great time as a Food Sort volunteer, met some great people, and it feels good to help people in need.

It's wonderful to see this organization is also highly rated by Charity Navigator.

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I volunteer monthly at SHFB and always leave feeling better than when I arrived. We sort & box produce, label cans, sort barrel donations, or whatever is needed when we get there. When my daughter turned 14 she started volunteering with me and now has an appreciation for giving back to the community. I also volunteer for a couple partner agencies so I see where boxes of produce end up as it's repacked for distribution or prepared as a meal. When I see where this food ends up, I fully appreciate the broad impact of SHFB. It's been at least 8 years since I started volunteering at SHFB and I hope to continue for many more.

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I am both a donor and volunteer with Second Harvest. I love coordinating members of my club to come work at Second Harvest on a Saturday morning. We get pretty dirty sorting cans and filling boxes, but we leave with such satisfaction knowing that our work will help people in our community. I also coordinate food donations at the holidays, as well as personally donating monthly. It's important to me that Second Harvest works locally in my community, helping those in need.

Previous Stories
1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I have supported Second Harvest financially for many years. In the last couple of years I've added volunteering at their site doing food distribution: sorting cans and bagging goods. I always leave the Second Harvest site feeling wonderful, I know I've made a difference in someone's life - the work is so direct to the needs of my community! The work is easy and fun. I coordinate volunteer work for my local democratic club and we try to be at Second Harvest a couple times a year. What I personally like best about Second Harvest is how their work is used in my local community. Rita, the organizer at Second Harvest in San Carlos, always starts the Saturday morning food sorts by telling the volunteers where the food is going and how much our work counts. We do the work that would cost this organization thousands of dollars a year (actually I think it's much, much more than that, more like $1m/year). As a financial supporter too, I know that my money is used well, with the majority going towards providing food in my community. What I don't see is wasteful mail with mailing labels, etc. that I receive from so many other groups. Second Harvest is one of the main groups I support each year and I highly recommend them to my family and friends.

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1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Second Harvest Food Bank is such a wonderful place to be at. Great opportunities to volunteer and get food. The staff is so kind hearted and always more than happy to help with whatever is needed.

1

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

Second Harvest Food Bank reaches out to the community to make sure that food is available to all that are hungry. They reach into the communities of both Santa Clara and San Mateo Counties. They also link agencies with disaster preparedness. I have worked with them through 3 agencies. I do not have pictures or video, but I am honored to be even acquainted with them.
Bonnie Miller

1 Kassundra R.

Client Served

Rating: 5

SHFB is a great i have been on both sides of the table being the person in need of the assistance and was able to receive fresh produce and other grocery needs with out feeling like i was getting some left overs that no one else wanted and was able to present them to my family and feel proud. Then in my employment when i found that we worked with SHFB and and I was going to be able to present these same fresh items to my clients and they appreciated them it was a good feeling for me and my team of coworkers good job SHFB keep up the great work

1 John409

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

As a retired Parole Agent, I have often referred my parolees and their families to the Second Harvest Food Bank for resources.
Even my own mother, who lives on a modest income, swears by and partakes in the Brown Bag for Seniors and the discounted hot meals at the Senior Center in East Palo Alto, CA. The Second Harvest Food Bank has enhanced the quality of life of Seniors and families in San Mateo & Santa Clara counties.

1 John408

Client Served

Rating: 5

A great non profit with a great cause helping people that can really use a boost.

Mary470

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

I have never worked with a non-profit like Second Harvest before. They truly care about the community and it's needs. Our families receive so much help from Second Harvest. Their employees are exceptionally helpful and good-hearted.

Joe_95

Client Served

Rating: 5

Having both volunteered and been a consumer at SHFB I would like to say it is one of the most vital and humane non-profits out there. I want to mention expressly, the local harvest of neighborhood fruit trees and say that this is some of the healthiest and best-tasting food I have encountered at any place. Volunteers are well-supervised and rewarded, and the staff is caring, professional, and helpful at every turn, including referrals to other resources above and beyond the call of their duties. They are superb in every way.

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I have volunteered once a week at SHFB Cypress location for 9 months now. I work at the reception desk, where I get a bird's eye view of all the activities that go on here. I get to meet SHFB Staff, Donors, Volunteers, and Clients. And they're all wonderful people. It is very gratifying to be a small part of this great organization which is helping SO many in our community who don't have enough food.

1

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

Very friendly staff. Always great selection of food. Easy to walk out with a smile on your face. Everyone there seems passionate about their work and is very genuine!

1

Client Served

Rating: 5

WHEN I'VE NEED SOME ASSISTANCE WITH GROCERIES BECAUSE I WAS HUNGRY THEY HELPED WITH FOOD WHICH I APPRECIATE VERY MUCH

1

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

I have worked at Second Harvest for over 32 years. I appreciate working at an organization with a mission to end hunger and has a heart.

1

Donor

Rating: 5

They are the best! I would recommend this food bank to everyone. Thanks for being so awesome!

2

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

This nonprofit is so amazing and inspiring! Food is a right not a privilege and the work they do to help feed the community with nutritious sustenance is awe-inspiring!

1 Lydia15

Donor

Rating: 5

My family has been contributing to and volunteering at the Second Harvest Food Bank for 2 years. We are incredibly impressed with the organization. Not only is Kathy Jackson a fantastic leader, but she has built a team of passionate and engaged staff. When we give to Second Harvest, we know that we are making a direct and positive impact on the health and happiness of families in our community.

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 1

VERY disappointing. We went to discuss their outreach with families and they spent the majority of the time promoting the local "talent" industry people in music and fashion than they did discussing the needs of low income and homeless people in the area who get a tax write off to help. VERY DISAPPOINTING. Many lovely charities in the area that are far more interesting in reaching and helping those who struggle.

Comments ( 1 )

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msilva 11/03/2015

This appears to be a review for a different Second Harvest Food Bank. We are a California-based food bank and do not host events promoting local music and fashion.

2

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

I cannot say enough great things about Second Harvest Food Bank! The staff is extremely friendly, the food they supply to clients is fresh and nutritious, and they truly make each dollar count. The volunteer opportunities are great team-building events for groups and they make you feel like your efforts are truly valuable. The food bank also works hard to create partnerships throughout the community and engage every stakeholder in an attempt to not only provide food for every person who needs it but to create systemic change.

Second Harvest is a model that other food banks across the country should be looking to emulate in terms of food quality, efficiency of distribution and general customer service to the public.

1

Donor

Rating: 5

We have been donating to Second Harvest Food Bank for years, and we are consistently impressed by the thoughtful and efficient work that they do to deliver healthy and nutritious food to families in Santa Clara and San Mateo Counties.