Our Mission & Vision
To lead our community in the fight to end hunger.
That no one has to go hungry in our community.
The Harry Chapin Food Bank is the largest hunger relief network in Southwest Florida, serving Charlotte, Collier, Glades, Hendry and Lee counties.
We rescue, inspect, transport and distribute donated food and other grocery products to more than 150 partner agencies and programs that provide direct services to those in need. They include food pantries, soup kitchens, in-school pantries, mobile pantries, senior programs, homeless shelters, disaster relief agencies and more. The food bank provides food for about 28,000 individuals each week.
When the Harry Chapin Food Bank of Southwest Florida opened its doors as the Lee County Food Cooperative in 1983, who could have imagined that 35 years later the food bank would distribute 24 million pounds of food in a single year?
When it began, the cooperative distributed government-provided surpluses of cheese and other dairy products. Almost immediately, the cooperative began recovering other food from retailers and growers and continued to grow. In 1985, the cooperative changed its name to the Southwest Florida Food Bank to reflect its regional service area.
In 1994, our name changed to Harry Chapin Food Bank of Southwest Florida, a tribute to the late singer who passionately fought hunger. In 2009, the food bank moved to its current 55,000 -square-foot-warehouse in Fort Myers.
We now lead the largest hunger-relief network in Southwest Florida by partnering with more than 150 agencies in Charlotte, Collier, Glades, Hendry and Lee counties to feed children, working-poor families, seniors and other individuals in need.
June 5, 1985
Becomes Southwest Florida Food Bank
June 5, 1990
Affiliates with America’s Second Harvest, now known as Feeding America, the national organization of food banks
June 5, 1994
Name changes to Harry Chapin Food Bank of Southwest Florida, a tribute to the late singer who passionately fought hunger
June 5, 2009
Moves to its current 55,000-square-foot warehouse and offices on Fowler Street in Fort Myers
June 5, 2010
Launches mobile pantry program to offer food directly to residents living in underserved communities
June 5, 2013
Launches Care & Share: Senior Feeding Campaign
June 5, 2014
Provides massive emergency relief to Southwest Florida in the wake of Hurricane Irma, distributing more than 3.9 million pounds of supplies in the first six weeks after the storm and holding 72 emergency mobile pantries in one month
June 5, 2017
Opens a new 13,500-square-foot Collier County Center in Naples
June 5, 2018
Distributes its 200 millionth pound of food