Last year, A Just Harvest celebrated 30 years of feeding hunger. Since 1983, A Just Harvest has provided nutritious meals to anyone in need – no questions asked. Thanks to the generosity of our food and financial donors, A Just Harvest has never had to turn away a person in need.
A Just Harvest (formerly known as Good News Community Kitchen) was founded by the Good News Community Church and First Congregational Church of Wilmette. These two congregations began serving a weekly meal – each contributing food and volunteers. By 1991, A Just Harvest was serving dinner seven nights a week in partnership with more than 35 religions congregations and community organizations. To learn more about our Community Kitchen today, click here.
Together we ensure that, on any given night, as many as two hundred people from around the Chicagoland area get enough to eat. (The highest number of people we’ve served on a single night is 229.) We’re here for people from all walks of life when they’re confronted with the choice between paying the rent and putting food on the table or paying for medication and getting enough to eat. We’re an especially important resource for:
- Seniors living on a fixed income,
- Homeless people,
- People who have lost their jobs,
- Workers whose jobs don’t pay enough to cover basic needs, and
- Children of all ages, including providing snacks to local afterschool programs and serving summer lunches.
A Just Harvest is known for being a resource to people in need 365 days a year. This constant presence is especially important during times of recession. In 2007, just prior to the recession, we served 39,439 meals and distributed 100,000 pounds of food. In 2012, we served 54,339 meals and distributed 296,000 pounds of food.
We feed hungry people, but we also feed our common hunger for hope, for fellowship, and for community. We feed people’s hunger to serve, to improve our communities, to be creative, and to be powerful agents for justice.
More recently, A Just Harvest made a commitment to addressing the root causes of hunger and poverty – via Northside P.O.W.E.R.’s community organizing (in 2004) and The Genesis Project’s economic development initiatives (in 2010) – while continuing to meet people’s immediate need for food.
A Just Harvest could not do this work without you, and we are grateful for your committed volunteer work and your donations of food and money that allow us to keep the doors open every night. We ask you to invite others to join us in this work, and we invite you to explore A Just Harvest’s Northside P.O.W.E.R. and The Genesis Project. For information about how to volunteer, click here.
In honor of our 30th anniversary, this year we are launching the Host an Evening 365 Campaign, which aims to secure a Host (or financial sponsor) for every day that the Community Kitchen services dinner in 2013. For more information about the Host an Evening 365 Campaign, click here. To learn about more ways to give to A Just Harvest, click here.