Fighting Hunger. Sustaining Hope.


In 1982, the St. Joseph Food Program began as a project of the Social Concerns Committee of the St. Joseph Parish in Appleton, Wisconsin.  Forty families were assisted that first year.  With the help of a caring community that shares food, money, and volunteer time, the program’s mission of “Fighting Hunger. Sustaining Hope” continues as a non-profit, non-denominational program reaching out to families in need.  The program receives no state or federal grants and depends on the community for its support.

Every morning (except Sundays) our 4 donated trucks follow regular routes picking up food from area groceries, bakeries, and restaurants.  Our trucks are also on call to pick up food from churches, businesses, civic groups, and individuals.  This food is then sorted, packaged, and distributed by our volunteers each Monday, Wednesday, and Friday morning and Monday evening. About five hundred families are served each week from our facility. Many more are assisted through help we offer to other organizations. To supplement donations, we regularly purchase non-perishables and fresh produce to keep our shelves stocked.   

All guests are carefully screened by our trained interviewers to determine eligibility. However, because we do not receive government funds, we can take each guests situation into consideration when determining need. Guests can come to St. Joe’s once each week for fresh produce, bakery, dairy, meat, non-perishables, paper products, and other necessities.

In early 2021, St. Joe’s will open 3 distribution windows to continue safe distribution for guests and volunteers. This effort was made possible due to the in-kind gifts of many supporters.

St. Joe’s works with other community organizations who are helping an overlapping demographic by accepting referrals from these agencies. Guests working with these organizations have the ability to use St. Joe’s for a period of time without having to qualify again at St. Joe’s. By accepting that agency’s referral, we create a seamless opportunity that removes barriers to service for those trying to improve their situations. These agencies are Goodwill Debt Management Program, ThedaCare Behavioral Health, WIC, and, soon to come, the Food as Medicine alumni program. By providing this type of service, we hope to encourage individuals and families to continue on a path to wellness.

  •  2,203 families consisting of 5,920 individuals were assisted.
  • Over 2.7 million pounds of food (2,708,822) were distributed free of charge.
  • Over 447 active volunteers donated over 18,904 hours to the operation of the program.
  • Many agencies and schools were assisted (see below)
Families served:
SJFP 424 families
Average family size:
2.6 members
Average food retail value per family visit:
Average food retail value a month/family:
$297.36 (based on family coming weekly)
Average pounds of food per visit:
45.03 lbs
Alliance families served:
Dale 134 families
Kaukauna 25 families
Seymour 55 families
Boys & Girls Club:
Appleton 150 individuals
Menasha 75 individuals
Little Chute 75 individuals
Kaleidoscope 50 indivduals
Meal Programs:
Loaves & Fishes 330 meals weekly
Outreach Agency:
Christine Anne 35 families
COTS (4 locations) 71 individuals
Ryan Community 18 individuals
Pillars Adult Shelter 60 individuals
Harbor House 35 individuals
Pillars Adult & Family 75 individuals
Apricity 50 individuals
Ascend 15 individuals
Trinity Lutheran 20 families
Valley Packaging 2 individuals
Heart of the Valley 35 individuals


Backpack Assistance Program:
Appleton 325 students
Kaukauna/Little Chute 76 students
Menasha 198 students
Neenah 303 students
New London
182 students
Black Creek 35 students
Wrightstown 33 students
High School Assistance:
Appleton West -
15 students
Appleton East -
15 students

Total weekly "touches" at our location and outreach:    3,693 individuals

Donate Today

Consider these gifts: Your time, money, and food.

Receive Assistance

Register for an interview to receive food free-of-charge.


Join the team of volunteers who make it all possible.