Moving Mountains: MANNA’s Food Distribution Program

MANNA FoodBank’s primary program is the Food Distribution Program. MANNA works with a network of more than 200 nonprofit partners to distribute food resources to individual communities across our 16-county service area, including the Qualla Boundary. The Partner Agency Network is comprised of these nonprofit partners who provide free food to community members via free food distributions, free community meals, and more.

The Partner Agency Network

Members of the Partner Agency Network are the front lines of addressing food insecurity across WNC. This network is a beautiful constellation of a variety of charitable groups and organizations who include food distributions in their service to communities. The network consists of food pantries, produce markets, community meal programs, residential agencies, domestic violence and housing insecure shelters, youth and senior programs, rehabilitation centers, and more.

Food Distribution Methods

Mobile Deliveries

MANNA offers mobile delivery services to members of the Partner Agency Network who do not have the means or resources to pick up and safely transport large quantities of food from MANNA’s distribution center. Driven by MANNA’s professional driving team of commercial drivers, mobile deliveries take food inventory directly an agency so that they can then open their doors to the community for free food distribution. The driving team covers all 16 counties in MANNA’s service area every two weeks to provide food resources at regular intervals to these dedicated partners serving their immediate community.

MANNA Express

MANNA Express deliveries are also services provided to members of the Partner Agency Network, but differ in their scope and frequency. MANNA Express deliveries are driven by a team of highly trained and dedicated volunteer drivers utilizing MANNA’s non-commercial box trucks, and deliver supplemental perishable foods to an agency on the day of their open food distribution. MANNA Express accomplishes two important food access goals: providing safely refrigerated perishable foods to an agency that might not have enough refrigeration or freezer capacity, and allowing the community to access fresh foods, including fresh fruits and vegetables, when they come to pick up food at a distribution.

MANNA Community Markets

Formerly known as Pop-Up Markets, the MANNA Community Markets (MCMs) are mobile pantry distributions which are designed to reach residents living in rural or underserved areas. Each market is held in partnership with a local organization who know the area’s food needs and have strong connections to the community. These market partners help run the market for their region by finding a location to host the distribution, providing volunteer support, and advertising the market to residents in their community who might need food resources.