The organizations are exploring ways to more effectively serve Connecticut
Connecticut Food Bank and Foodshare today announced that the boards of both food banks are in discussions to merge as one statewide organization to more effectively serve people in Connecticut who struggle with food insecurity.
Foodshare Board chair Beth Henry and Connecticut Food Bank past Board chair Wes Higgins have led the process for the two organizations and released a statement today regarding the progress of the talks. “We have been engaged in a deliberate and thoughtful process to determine how we can achieve our united mission with our experienced and dedicated staff, our partner agencies, our volunteers, and our donors. We look forward to providing an update early in 2021.”
Mr. Higgins added that the two organizations have a history of collaborative work that made the discussions a logical next step. “We have worked together in the past on issues of advocacy, policy, and service delivery. This is a natural evolution of that partnership.”
Ms. Henry said that Foodshare and Connecticut Food Bank “have cooperated on logistics, including food distribution and statewide fundraising, most recently during the coronavirus pandemic. This conversation is happening because we work well together and we believe strongly we can do even more as a combined team.”
As part of the discussions, a framework for a combined organization is in development. Ms. Henry and Mr. Higgins said that the new Board of Directors will be comprised of members of both existing boards and that Foodshare President & CEO Jason Jakubowski, who has displayed strong leadership in his role as CEO for the past three years would be named President & CEO of the new organization. The new organization will have a new name that will “reflect its statewide nature,” said Ms. Henry. “For the first time in history, Connecticut will have one dynamic statewide network of 700-plus partner agencies including pantries, meal programs, mobile distribution sites, and more.”
Mr. Higgins said that the new organization would continue operations in Bloomfield and Wallingford and that there are no immediate plans to make reductions in staff. “The Board of Directors of the new organization will continually evaluate operations and make subsequent decisions based on what will allow us to effectively distribute high-quality, nutritious food to the most Connecticut residents.”