Who’s Feeding the Pack?
Feed the Pack, NC State’s campus food pantry, receives generous support from many community organizations around Raleigh. Find out more about who they are and how they help address food insecurity among the Wolfpack and greater Raleigh community.
Each Monday, a group of staff and student volunteers from Feed the Pack drive to various locations around Raleigh to pick up pizzas, fresh produce and more food and essentials for NC State’s campus food pantry. But where, exactly, does it come from, and why do these community partners support Feed the Pack? Keep reading to find out!
Inter-Faith Food Shuttle
Inter-Faith Food Shuttle is a nonpartisan, non-profit organization and a member of the Feeding America National Network of Food Banks. As a Feeding America Food Bank, Inter-Faith Food Shuttle recovers and distributes food to people in need and provides programs designed to empower individuals with skills to meet their food needs through culinary job training, beginner gardening and cooking healthy on a budget.
All of the Food Shuttle’s programs seek to support low-income individuals and families lacking access to nutritious food and without the income to purchase healthy meals. The Spinning Plate, Inter-Faith’s new state-of-the-art mobile kitchen, has provided more than 3,500 hot meals in partnership with food pantries, organizations, local businesses and schools. Through churches and community centers, over 30,000 people receive free groceries and fresh produce at Mobile Markets each month. Volunteers deliver bags of non-perishable groceries and fresh produce — some grown at Inter-Faith’s own farm — to over 2,000 seniors. More than 5,600 students receive nutritious meals through BackPack Buddies and groceries through school pantries. All told, by partnering with over 150 community partners such as soup kitchens, shelters, food pantries, schools, churches and community centers, Inter-Faith Food Shuttle serves, on average, more than 70,000 adults and children struggling with hunger every month.
Inter-Faith Food Shuttle operates in a seven-county service area in central North Carolina, including Wake, Durham, Johnston, Orange, Chatham, Nash and Edgecombe counties.
Elizabeth Rodgers started as a volunteer at Inter-Faith Food Shuttle in 2006 and became a full time employee later that year. She is now the community engagement manager.
“We’re excited about the NC State partnership, and we’re here to provide food and non-food donations to ensure that students at NC State can focus on their studies and not be distracted by lack of food,” said Rodgers. “Through the NC State partnership, we have been able to provide casserole meals, variety foods and emergency food boxes to students, especially the ones who were unable to return home during the pandemic.”
Papa Murphy’s is a take-and-bake pizza company based in Vancouver, Washington. The company is the fifth-largest pizza chain in the United States, and its franchisees operate more than 1,300 restaurants in the United States and Canada.
There are eight Papa Murphy’s locations in the Raleigh area, but the one closest to NC State’s main campus is located just off of Oberlin Road. Each store in the Raleigh area is part of Twickenham Holdings, LLC., which is the Papa Murphy’s franchise for North Carolina, Alabama, Tennessee and Savannah, Ga.
Papa Murphy’s is an avid supporter of Feed the Pack. Its Raleigh locations provide Feed the Pack with vouchers that students, faculty and staff can redeem for free pizzas, and each Monday they provide ready-made pizzas directly to the food pantry. Additionally, all eight Wake County locations choose one night each academic semester to donate 25 percent of all sales to Feed the Pack. Richard Averitte, an NC State alumnus, is vice president for marketing, and was introduced to the campus food pantry by Maggie Kane, founder and executive director of A Place at the Table. He was especially struck when he read a 2020 report that revealed more than 20 percent of students at NC State struggle with food insecurity.
“One of the first things that really stuck out to me when I first met with Feed the Pack was the number of students and staff battling food insecurity,” he said. “I thought as a company that gives back to the community, this is something we needed to get involved in and support the students and staff who are so vital to our community.”
Food Bank of Central & Eastern North Carolina
The Food Bank of Central & Eastern North Carolina is a nonprofit organization that has provided food for those facing hunger in 34 counties in central and eastern North Carolina for 40 years. The Food Bank is an affiliate member of Feeding America, the nation’s leading domestic hunger relief charity. In terms of total food distributed, the Food Bank ranks in the top 15 nationally among 200 Feeding America food banks and first in North Carolina. Its food distribution programs and child nutrition programs are based on national models.
The Food Bank began operations in 1980 with funds from the Episcopal Diocese of North Carolina and now partners with a network of more than 900 partner agencies such as soup kitchens, food pantries, shelters and programs for children and adults through distribution facilities in Durham, Greenville, New Bern, Raleigh, the Sandhills (Southern Pines) and Wilmington.
One of the Food Bank’s many community partnerships is with Feed the Pack, for which they provide canned goods, fresh produce, dried goods and essential non-food items.
“When we’re looking for agencies to partner with, something that we look for is our network values,” said Pamela Foust, senior outreach coordinator. “We’re looking at partners that are on board with the same type of values we have, and one of our most important values is client focus. We understand that through our partnership with Feed the Pack that NC State is equally as focused on its clients — not just their food needs, but their food nutrition needs and any other resources the university might be able to offer them. Our missions line up very closely, which is why we partner with Feed the Pack.”
A Place at the Table
A Place at the Table is a pay-what-you-can, nonprofit restaurant in downtown Raleigh whose mission is community and great food for all, regardless of financial means. All prices on the menu are suggested, meaning that some pay the suggested price, some pay more, some pay less, and some pay by volunteering at the restaurant.
A Place at the Table hosts food drives for Feed the Pack and offers meal tokens students and employees can use for a free meal at the cafe.
Maggie Kane, founder and executive director of A Place at the Table, graduated from NC State in 2013 and began working for a nonprofit where she assisted people experiencing homelessness. By founding A Place at the Table, she has created a new model to fight hunger and remove the stigma of homelessness and poverty while inviting the community to participate.
“I love NC State, and knowing that up to 20 percent of students and staff there are dealing with food insecurity really bothers me,” Kane said. “I think it’s unacceptable that we have hungry folks on our own campus, so we want to make sure everyone at NC State knows that they are welcome to come and get a good, dignified meal when they need it.”