Basic Needs Health 2018-20
Boys and Girls Club of the Midlands
BGCM focuses on meeting the basic needs of children in poverty, working towards the goal that all Club members will adopt a healthy diet, practice healthy lifestyle choices and make a lifelong commitment to fitness. They accomplish these goals by delivering evidence-based educational curriculum, physical fitness activities and assessments, and increasing access to healthy food to disadvantaged, at-risk youth during out of school time.
Catholic Charities of the Archdiocese of Omaha
The Neighborhood Centers provide direct assistance that mitigates hunger and food insecurity, provides the tools and education for individuals to rise out of poverty and live healthier, happier lives. The two centers (St. Martin de Porres Center in north Omaha (SMdP) and Juan Diego Center (JDC) in south Omaha) are well-recognized community venues that affirm the dignity of each person receiving services. They have created a culture of trust and competence by intentionally promoting a welcoming environment for low- to no-income individuals and families in these communities. Services include: Food Pantry – the two emergency food pantries serve over 20,000 low- to no-income individuals on-site and through mobile pantries annually.
Catholic Charities Senior Centers
Catholic Charities of the Archdiocese of Omaha
The Senior Center program provides a safe and welcoming environment that mitigates isolation, improves socialization and provides programming and activities that are empowering to low-income senior adults, affirming their decision to remain in their neighborhood and in their own homes. Structured programming is offered throughout the year from 9:00 am to 1:00 pm on Monday, Wednesday, and Fridays, and for nonstructured activities, Tuesday and Thursdays 10:00 am to 1:00 pm. The program has a monthly calendar of activities, developed with client input to include activities surrounding core areas: personal safety, health, education, community involvement, personal and social development, and finances.
Weekend Food Program
The Completely KIDS vision is to ensure that families have access to the knowledge and skills necessary to break the cycle of poverty. In response to the realization that many of their children were not eating a meal between Completely KIDS snack at the end of the day on Friday and school breakfast on Monday morning, they started the Weekend Food Program more than 12 years ago. They provide 20 child-friendly, healthy items (including fresh produce) in a bag for 460 children every week and over long school breaks. Completely KIDS locations are also summer feeding sites to ensure children have access to nutritious food over the summer. Completely KIDS also provides a full meal for a daily snack at all locations in partnership with Omaha Public Schools and the Food Bank’s Kids Café.
Heart Ministry Center
Heart Ministry Center’s food pantry is the busiest food pantry in Nebraska and was the first choice food pantry in Omaha. A choice food pantry gives clients options and lets them choose what they want to eat. This allows clients to be treated with more dignity and respect while simultaneously reducing waste. The Center works diligently to provide large food pantries with a variety of options and healthy dietary standards.
Hunger and Homeless Prevention Program
Heartland Hope Mission
Heartland Hope Mission operates a “client choice” pantry for those at risk of hunger in the Omaha area. We offer a 7-9 day supply of food such as fresh produce, bread, milk, eggs and meat, along with canned and boxed items, to allow families to prepare meals at home. But they are more than a pantry. Clients can receive clothing, hygiene and access to Client Service staff, who offer referrals based on client needs, plus assistance with applying or recertifying for SNAP.
The Meal Program provides nutritional food for all hungry and homeless individuals – as well as for low or no-income individuals and families in the Omaha community – who seek meals at Siena/Francis House Homeless Shelter each and every day of the year. The Meal Program is able to operate efficiently because of their organization’s Employment Training Program offered to homeless men and women, the majority of whom are also participants in their residential addiction recovery program. Employment Training Program participants help provide services to homeless guests staying in their shelters, while in-turn learning skills in office reception, pick-up and delivery of goods, food service, and facilities and grounds maintenance. In these roles, these homeless men and women develop essential interpersonal and technical skills needed to gain and sustain employment outside the shelter.
Area Feeding Programs
The Salvation Army – NE
The Salvation Army provides several feeding programs in the Omaha Metro Area. One program is at the Omaha North Corps’ Community Care Kitchen, which is designed to feed the hungry at lunchtime Monday through Friday. However, over time this program has developed greater purposes: supporting the working poor, empowering individuals with knowledge on further education programs and career opportunities, and finally, providing hope for participants to have a few moments of normality and safety. Safety is the secondary goal within the Community Care Kitchen. The Community Care Kitchen meals are hosted for only two and a half hours a day; however, this is two and a half hours of peace that most of the clients wouldn’t experience without the Community Care Kitchen. Lastly, they strive to empower their participants by providing opportunities for them to learn about further education programs and/or prospective career changes. The other Salvation Army feeding program is the Winter Night Watch program, which is a mobile feeding program. These services are delivered at five stops with two mobile feeding canteens five days a week from December 1 to February 28. This program assists homeless and at-risk individuals by providing healthy food and clothing to keep individuals fed and warm through the winter months.
Together Inc of Metropolitan Omaha
Nutrition education programming at Together has two overarching goals. First, Together aims to increase access to nutritious, culturally appropriate food in the food pantry. Second, nutrition education programs will capitalize on that increased access to build client skills in the areas of nutritious food purchasing and preparation. Together believes that when clients are exposed to nutritious options and given the tools to increase their intake of nutritious foods, what follows is improved physical health outcomes, financial stability, and increased resilience and self-sufficiency.