The SOVA Innovation Hub hosted the Honor the Dream Food Drive from January 9-13, 2023. Over 150 items were donated for the distribution that Community Fridge Halifax hosted on Martin Luther King, Jr. Day at Elkhorn Baptist Church. Since then we had the opportunity to discuss Community Fridge Halifax with Juanita Johnson.
What is Community Fridge Halifax?
Community Fridge Halifax is a non-profit formed in 2020. Volunteers purchase fruits and vegetables weekly to distribute to elderly, homebound or less fortunate neighbors in western Halifax County.
Community Fridge Halifax Volunteers
“The support of the volunteers and the community has been amazing. Everyone has been extremely gracious and appreciative.”
How did Community Fridge Halifax get started?
When Juanita moved back to the area after retiring from a career in social work, she noticed many people were not eating the healthiest. “Individuals face daily challenges such as transportation, the inability to get to town, and financial challenges to name a few. People are having to spend money they would spend on food for transportation.”
As she was contemplating what she could do to help and how she would fund this effort she discovered ChangeX. Juanita applied and received $5,000.00. Community Fridge Halifax was born.
“ChangeX is such a blessing. We have been able to help so many families through the funds we were graciously awarded. When we were getting low on funds I received a letter stating we still had the second installment of $1,500.00.”
What is ChangeX?
ChangeX is a program supported by Microsoft that encourages positive change in communities. The program provides the support and network needed for individuals and organizations to improve the community in which they live.
Proven project ideas are listed below:
First Lego League
Recycle Across America
Hour of Code
Most recently ChangeX provided $50,000 for the ChangeX Southern Virginia Community Challenge. Individuals and groups in Halifax, Mecklenburg, Brunswick, Charlotte, and Lunenburg counties could apply for funding.
Prior community challenges enabled almost 40 local groups to start community projects. Check out some of the past projects here.
What is next for Community Fridge Halifax?
Community Fridge Halifax volunteers gather to distribute fresh fruits and vegetables on Martin Luther King, Jr. Day.
After seeing how grateful and appreciative the recipients are, Community Fridge Halifax would like to do more to help. “We will still distribute fruits and vegetables for those in need, but we plan to grow. We would like to:
establish a food bank
educate others about healthy eating and specific medical issues that can be prevented from eating healthy
partner with some local groups to teach people how to plant raised gardens so they can raise their own healthy food
stop by and check on the elderly in the community
form a walking club
How can you help?
Host a Food Drive and collect fruits and vegetables for Community Fridge Halifax or if interested in volunteering contact Juanita Johnson at (434) 637-2797 or firstname.lastname@example.org.