July 2017 Donation Challenge

Please accept the July 2017 Food Shelf Challenge from Open Your Heart to the Hungry and Homeless and Bemidji Community Food Shelf (BCFS).  You can make a difference this year by making a financial donation during the month of July. The more funds donated during July  the larger our food shelf’s grant from Open Your Heart to the Hungry and Homeless will be.

In Minnesota, summer means fresh produce. But many Minnesota families can’t afford weekly trips to the farmer’s market for fruits and vegetables.  BCFS helps to provide nutritious fruits and vegetables to families in our community.  We need your help this summer.

Every day, Minnesotans make over 9,000 visits to food shelves statewide – that is six visits to a food shelf every minute. Last July, 848 families visited BCFS.

We see an increase in child visits during the summer. When school is out for summer vacation, many children miss out on free school meals and their families turn to us for support.  Make a bigger impact on hunger in our community this July.

Thank you.

Tamarack Raised Bed Fundraiser!

Would you like an awesome raised bed to magically appear in your garden?

Well, the volunteers and staff at the Bemidji Community Food Shelf Farm will do just that! For a very reasonable price, you can have a lovely wooden raised bed installed, ready-to-plant, at your home.

All proceeds go towards growing fresh, delicious produce for Food Shelf families .

Click here to view the order form and pricing. If you like what you see, go ahead and fill it out to place your order today!

BCFS seeks applicants for Americorps VISTA position

Cultivate a compassionate response to hunger and plant seeds of empowerment in our community! Strengthen the Bemidji Community Food Shelf volunteer program to deliver education and fresh produce to families in need. Join us as an  Americorps VISTA (Volunteer In Service To America) and serve as our Volunteer Program Developer (click for full position description).

This is a great opportunity for recent college graduates, someone looking for a career change, or even for someone looking to set their skills on making a positive impact in our community. This is a one year position from 7/31/2017 to 7/27/18 offering a modest stipend and great opportunities for professional development and extensive networking. We are accepting applications through May 15th so APPLY NOW!

2017 Minnesota FoodShare March Campaign

The 2017 Minnesota FoodShare March Campaign is underway! This campaign, coordinated by the Greater Minneapolis Council of Churches, gives BCFS and foods shelves across the state an extra boost to get through the summer months, when use is higher and donations are lower. All donations of food and funds will be tallied and will receive a partial match through the campaign. Funds raised will be used to purchase food, pay utilities and generally keep our doors open over the summer. We find that about 70% of families use the food shelf only 1-4 times a year, which shows us that they come because they need to and not simply because they can. Please consider helping us serve the nearly 3,000 families who are in need of our services throughout the year.

Thank you!

Jim Fretheim Elected President of BCFS

Jim is a retired pastor in the Evangelical Covenant Church of America.  He retired as Superintendent of the Northwest Conference in 2011. The  Northwest Conference includes congregations in MN, WI, ND and SD. He and his wife Kathy have been married for 44 years and have two adult children and one grandchild in St. Paul. The distribution of food and clothing has been a vital part of the work of many of his congregations.

Outgoing President Bill Beyer (L) with
Newly Elected President Jim Fretheim (R) and Mary Mitchel (C) Executive Director