Growing to Give Campaign

Individuals experiencing food insecurity who live in Sarpy County and surrounding areas are currently relying on a food pantry that is under-resourced and unprepared (in terms of space, staff, and infrastructure) to meet these expanding needs both now and in the future.

Therefore, with the help of community volunteers and partners, NeighborGood is embarking on a campaign to raise significant funds to design and build a permanent home which will be equipped for the rising demand in our communities, and also to establish funds for an infrastructure with long-term, dynamic, holistic, client-choice services.

After a substantial amount of necessary funds has been raised, construction will begin, additional staff will be hired, and infrastructural systems will be built.

People may believe that the problems associated with hunger are confined to small pockets of society or certain neighborhoods, but the reality is much different. Right now, many people right here in our community are struggling with hunger. They may have recently lost a job or are disabled and unable to work. They are often hard-working adults, happy children, and local seniors who simply cannot make ends meet and have to sacrifice meals to meet other basic needs.

NeighborGood currently serves thousands of local residents out of its low-profile storage space. The current space was never designed for the quantity of traffic it is experiencing with NeighborGood, and presents many barriers and obstacles for clients, staff, and volunteers.

As the population surrounding NeighborGood’s service area continues to grow food insecurity is expected to increase accordingly as new neighbors experience hardships and seek assistance.

NeighborGood seeks to build a 9,000+sf facility next door to its current location.

The new facility will have the following attributes to optimize service to the expanding food security needs of this area:

  • 3,000sf of retail-style space for client selection of food and hygiene items (with shopping baskets and carts)
  • Expanded on-site storage to provide a varied inventory
  • Energy efficient commercial cold storage for distribution of more fresh produce, protein, and dairy
  • Secure, efficient administrative offices
  • Private consultation area for nutrition/horticulture education and community health clinics
  • “Soil to sustenance” initiatives: community garden, edible landscaping, farm surplus, and composting
  • Flexibility and capacity to become a point of distribution (POD) and emergency operations center (EOC) for crisis response
  • Fully ADA compliant

To learn more about our plans for a new facility, including campaign budget, project rationale, and fundraising progress, please contact NeighborGood Executive Director Melissa Nelson at [email protected] to request a phone call, Zoom call, or in-person meeting in the near future. We would love to share more about our latest progress!

NeighborGood is governed by a Board of Directors. The Capital Campaign Committee is composed of five board members with a passion for addressing this region’s need for a full-service food security agency as well as holding relevant subject matter expertise. The Capital Campaign Advisory Committee is a collection of partners and advocates who have endorsed and expressed enthusiasm for this historic project and who meet on an individual basis, with NeighborGood board members and representatives.

Capital Campaign Committee

Michelle Christensen, Board Member
Owner, Papillion Windows and Siding

Andrea Powers, President, Board of Directors
Community Volunteer

Chris Henkenius, Board Member
Owner, H4 Technology

Becky Jackson, Board Member
Nebraska Medicine

Melissa Nelson
Executive Director, NeighborGood Community Pantry

Capital Campaign Advisory Committee

Karen Gibler
President, Sarpy Chamber of Commerce

Our Community Needs a Larger, More Dynamic Food Security Agency – Now and in the Future

Nationwide, food security agencies are facing an urgent concern as the ongoing need for food security coincides with both an obesity epidemic and population growth. Incorporating a “client choice” model and nutritional policies will be essential. Increasingly, cultural sensitivity will be a crucial element in the delivery of services.

Specifically in our service area (of the Greater Sarpy County and Ralston communities), NeighborGood must continue its role as a beacon for food security as various factors converge to create rapidly increasing demand:

  • Exploding population
  • Economic adversity affecting working families
  • Increasing cultural diversity
  • NeighborGood’s unique market position due to its location and longstanding partnerships

Read more about national trends in food security agencies HERE.

Read more about food insecurity in our communities HERE.

The NeighborGood Board of Directors is currently pursuing significant gifts and grants as we urgently seek to gather the resources necessary to begin construction.

As we are seeking gifts for a once-in-a-generation historic project, gifts may be pledged over the course of several months or years for the convenience of the donor or funding agency.

We intend to recognize the generosity of each leadership gift to the capital campaign. NeighborGood assures donors that upon completion of the expansion and renovation, Capital Campaign donors will be recognized prominently in NeighborGood’s new home with custom signage.

Upon completion of the campaign, NeighborGood board and staff will have conversations with each donor, in order of significance, to assign names to spaces if desired.

If you are interested in making a gift to this campaign, we invite you to communicate directly with one of the NeighborGood Capital Campaign Committee Members or NeighborGood Executive Director Melissa Nelson at [email protected] to request a phone call, Zoom call, or in-person meeting in the near future.

NeighborGood is equipped to accept gifts through our account at the Midlands Community Foundation, cashier check, or bank transfer. In-kind gifts of stock, grain, or other assets may also be facilitated as needed.

For your convenience, you may download a PDF of a multi-year pledge form HERE. Before you make your commitment we would prefer to hear from you directly so we can share more information about this project.

Help us reach our goal

Contribute today through the Midlands Community Foundation