This spring, the food bank surveyed the families coming to us for aid. One hundred seventy families completed the survey. See the slide show at the end of the article.
The majority of the families live in Town ‘n Country, with the largest percentage from zip code 33615.
Family members who completed the survey ranged in age from 21 to 83. Around 5% were in their 20’s and 15% in their 70’s and 80’s. The rest were nearly evenly distributed in their 30’s, 40’s 50’s and 60’s.
Nearly fifty percent of the families who come to the food bank consist of two or three persons. Half of the rest are single individuals and half are families of four or more. Close to 60% of the families are childless. Most of the rest are families with one or two children. But lately we’ve noticed the number of families with three or more children is increasing.
We were interested in finding out how families hear about the food bank. We discovered far more families learn about the food bank from friends or neighbors than from churches or our website and Facebook page.
The answers to the survey question, “What are the main reason(s) you/your family come to the food bank for assistance?” confirmed the need is ongoing. Twenty percent responded they are elderly or on a fixed income and/or 15% said they have a medical condition. The results also suggest the economic improvement in the Bay Area has not reached our families. Thirty percent said they lost their job, do not have a job or work too few hours.
We wanted to learn how long families have been coming to the food bank. More than one-third of the families have been coming less than three months. Close to 30% have been coming between 3 and 6 months, 22% between 6 months and a year and 16% more than a year. These results match the reasons for seeking help. More than half the families coming more than a year are either elderly or with a medical condition—or both.
Finally, we asked the families to identify the best thing at the food bank. We found out the families overwhelmingly appreciated the kindness and helpfulness of our volunteers. And they stated both that they were treated with respect and they liked being able to select from a variety of foods.
The results of the survey both confirmed what we knew and generated suggestions. The food bank clearly provides a local resource for a range of families in need. Both the conditions bringing families to the food bank and their current economic situation suggest the need will continue or even grow.
It is a deeply held tenet of the food bank that we treat everyone coming to us with kindness and respect. We also strive to offer a range of food choices. We were gratified that the survey results validate our efforts.
The answers to the question of how families hear about us indicate that we could expand our efforts let those who need help know about the food bank. Members of local churches are encouraged to spread the word to families in need—especially to those who might not learn about the food bank from another source.
Here is a slide show with the results of our survey. To view the slide show, click on arrow at the bottom of the slide.To view the slide show in a full screen, click the little on the bottom right corner of the slide show. When you are finished looking at the slide show, press the "escape" key on your computer and you will exit full screen mode.
A sampling of this week’s best buys for our school supply project.
MARCO’S PIZZA STEPS UP - ORDER ANY DAY THROUGH AUGUST TO SUPPORT THE FOOD BANK
Recently we posted that Marco's Pizza in Westchase (9872 West Linebaugh Ave) was continuing their support for the food bank by donating a portion of purchases ordered by phone (813-920-5300) (813-920-5300) or in person any Monday or Tuesday in July and August. You just needed to mention the Kaye Prox Food Bank when ordering.
Perhaps you wanted to participate and support the food bank but only eat pizza on the weekend or Wednesdays or... just not on Monday or Tuesday. Well, Marco's Pizza has stepped up! You can now order any day in July and August and they will donate a portion of your order to the food bank. No excuse now!
Thanks, Marco’s Pizza, for giving us a chance to enjoy your delicious food and support the food bank any day all summer long!