Of the many impacts that coronavirus has had on our community, the nationwide shortfall at food banks may be one of the most devastating. Over 30 million Americans have filed for unemployment benefits in the last six weeks. The exponential increase in demand for food is unfortunately met by a drop in donations. Some of the major sources of food donations – hotels and restaurants – are shut down, while another source – grocery stores – have been picked clean by anxious customers. There is, of course, the good will of the community, and that is exactly what came to the rescue this week. Despite the dire situation of many Americans, the Denver Area was boosted by goodwill in a food drive held last weekend.

As the First Presidency reminded its membership in church-wide communication April 14, 2020, “We are to be “anxiously engaged” in relieving suffering and helping those in need.” They further stated, “We invite our members to participate in… relief projects in their areas and communities as opportunities arise and as local government directives and personal circumstances allow.” Denver Area residents responded to the First Presidency’s message and the needs of local food banks with rousing success. 

Starting Saturday, April 25 and ending Saturday, May 2, 13 stakes helped restock food and pantry essentials for over 20 area food banks. With just over a week’s notice, members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints helped refill empty shelves with food, paper goods, and even masks. Over a hundred thousand pounds of food were donated, and tens of thousands of dollars came in as well. Each stake was able to supplement the needs of one or several of their local food banks. The Parker Task Force, recipients of Parker and Parker South Stake’s efforts, reported that their total donations more than made up for the two food drives they’ve had to cancel (scheduled for April and June). Boulder Stake’s donations calculated enough to feed 30 families for a month.

As the idea was born, Katie Moon, JustServe Director for the Denver North Area, recalls feeling hopeful, but unsure about the expected response. Given the size of the task and the timeline in which she and her team hoped to meet their goals, there was no telling what result to expect. Nobody knew that they were about to pull off a miracle. The outcome was, “…nothing short of amazing. I was overwhelmed by the amount of generosity I was seeing.” For hours, the lines of cars filled with people donating kept coming. Across the Denver Metro area, rented U-Hauls, pick-up trucks, trailers, and moving vans were filled to capacity. The former scare of not being able to fill personal needs was set aside, and the needs of others took priority.

That exact re-prioritizing of needs brings a silver lining to trials. And it’s one of the ways that communities can come together. Last weekend’s food drive was no exception. Many stakes partnered with other local churches, doubling results and building relationships along the way. When he arrived to donate, Father Michael, of St. Matthews Episcopal Church, thanked the organizers for inviting him and his congregation. His sentiments mirrored those of the rest who were able to help. Moon reports, “Many people thanked us for giving them a way to help others.” Some went one step further. When they took inventory of what else was needed at their initial drop-off, they went back to the store, bought specific food items, and returned with a second load of donations.

Those were not the only steps given in service. Physical donations were supplemented with monetary donations. In Littleton Stake, volunteers were able to do the shopping for those who who couldn’t get out of their homes. This helped fill the specific item requests from their recipients, St. Mary Parish Pantry and Nourish Meals on Wheels.

Volunteers filled Costco flatbeds with food, all bought with the thousands of dollars of donations. Though household budgets are stretched tight, members of The Church of Jesus Christ dug a little deeper and donated even more. Estimated reports show at least $20K in monetary donations were raised last weekend alone. This helped address both the needs of the hungry, and the need of those who are high-risk to remain isolated. Sarah Hill, JustServe Director for Denver South Area said, “The creativity people showed in being able to do such a project in such unusual circumstances was very exciting.”

Of the generosity, Hill further said, “It was heartwarming and impressive to see so many people help. It’s a tough time for everybody, but being able to serve others is at the core of everyone’s well-being.”

While healthcare workers help those afflicted with coronavirus to breathe, Denver residents have helped in their own way. Food bank directors, and their recipients, may all be breathing a little easier themselves, as shelves are re-stocked, pantries filled, and food for the hungry has been re-supplied. The impacts of a pandemic are far-reaching. But in Denver, so is the service and brotherly love that comes with it.

Food Bank Recipients 

  1. Aurora Interfaith Community Services
  2. Bennett Community Food Bank
  3. Broomfield Fish
  4. CARES Food Bank of Strasberg
  5. Community Food Share
  6. Covenant Cupboard
  7. Erie Food Bank
  8. Growing Home
  9. Harvest Food Bank
  10. Health and Hope Center
  11. Hope Starts Here Food Bank
  12. Integrated Family Community Services
  13. Jewish Family Services
  14. Lutheran Family Services, Food Bank for Refugees
  15. Montbello Organizing Committee
  16. Northglenn Christian Food Bank
  17. Nourish Meals on Wheels
  18. Open Arms Food Bank
  19. Parker Task Force
  20. Ruby’s Market
  21. St Mary Parish Pantry
  22. Thornton Community Food Bank
  23. Valley View Cares (SECOR)

Interfaith Partners

  1. Lord of the Hills Lutheran Church
  2. Providence Presbyterian
  3. Beginnings Community Church
  4. Spirit of Hope Lutheran
  5. St. Matthews Episcopal Church
  6. The House Worship Center

Recently a Citywide Communication Council meeting was held to discuss the needs of local food banks. Demand for food bank assistance has multiplied dramatically in light of recent events and the usual suppliers are not able to keep up.

As a combined effort with various faiths, members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints are working along with their neighbors to help fill this need.

Many local congregations will be engaging in a large Food Drive effort on Saturday, April 25th. Local leaders will organize the when and where of specific drop-offs and pickups.

What follows is a list of area-specific food banks along with any special requests and drop off locations and times. Please consider identifying the food bank nearest you and contributing as you are able.

Arapahoe

Food Bank:  Hope Starts Here  20050 E Smoky Hill Rd, Centennial, CO 80015

Special Requests: Cash donations to fix or buy new truck, canned goods, diapers.

Drop off Locations and Times: Cash donations can be made at https://www.hshfoodbank.org/donate/, bags will be dropped off to community members during the week and collected on Saturday, April 25. Will be delivered to pantry the following week.

Aurora

Food Bank: Aurora Interfaith Community Services 1553 Clinton St, Aurora, CO 80010

Special Requests: Only non-perishable items: canned fruits and vegetables; protein (beans chicken, ground beef, tuna); powdered milk; peanut butter; rice; pastas; dried herbs and spices; granola bars; nuts; canned soups, stews and chilis; whole grain cereal; face masks; hand sanitizer; toilet paper; paper towels.

Drop Off Locations and Times:  Anytime now until the evening of Friday, April 24.

5252 Truckee St, Denver, CO 80249 

There will be a box on the front step for donations and they can ring the doorbell. We are asking for zero contact drop off locations.

Aurora South

Food Bank: Ruby’s Market/Bazaar

Special Requests: Rice: Jasmine or Basmati; dried beans: kidney or black; lentils; oil: olive, canola or vegetable (in a plastic bottle); pasta; powdered milk; salt; sugar (4-5 lb bag); flour (4-5 lb bag); $25 gift card for H-Mart, Walmart, or King Soopers (for meat and fresh items); soap; shampoo; hand sanitizer; laundry soap; disinfectant cleansers/wipes; dental hygiene products; feminine hygiene products; tissues; toilet paper; diapers, wipes and diaper cream.

Drop Off Locations and Times:  10am – 12pm, Saturday, April 25

740 Hudson Street, Denver & 3101 S. Flanders Street, Aurora

Boulder

Food Bank: Erie Food Bank; 635 Pierce St, Erie, CO 80516

Drop Off Locations and Times:  Saturday,* May 2* 10am-12pm at one of 3 locations: 

Erie Community Center Parking Lot: 450 Powers Street, Erie, CO 80516

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints 1250 Main Street, Broomfield, CO 80020

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints 701 South Boulder Road, Louisville, CO 80027


Food Bank: Community Food Share; 650 S Taylor Ave, Louisville, CO 80027

Drop Off Locations and Times:  Saturday,* May 2* 10am-12pm at one of 3 locations: 

Erie Community Center Parking Lot: 450 Powers Street, Erie, CO 80516

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints 1250 Main Street, Broomfield, CO 80020

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints 701 South Boulder Road, Louisville, CO 80027

Castle Rock

Food Bank: Health and Hope Center Castle Rock; 1638 Park St, Castle Rock, CO 80109

Special Requests: Canned chili, canned stew, canned meat or chicken soup, feminine hygiene products – especially tampons, laundry pods (we will divide these up so that more families get them), taco seasoning and/or taco shells, canned tuna fish.

Drop Off Locations and Times: Donations can be dropped off between 8 am and 1 pm, Monday – Friday in the back of the Help & Hope Center Food Bank.

Food Bank: Valley View Cares, a branch of SECOR;

11004 Wildfield Lane, Littleton, CO 80125

Drop off at Valley View Cares Friday 12-4, Saturday 9-1 (Go around back and look for Valley View Cares sign)

Columbine

Food Bank: Integrated Family Community Services (IFCS)

Drop off Location and Times: IFCS (3370 S Irving St, Englewood, CO 80110)  M-F 8:30-11:30a; 1-3p (no afternoon dropoff Wednesday)

Food Bank: Open Arms

Drop Off Locations and Times: by appointment only call (720) 288-0155


Denver

Food Bank: Jewish Family Services; 3201 S Tamarac Dr, Denver

Special Requests: Canned fruit, peanut butter, cereal/oatmeal, canned soup, canned salmon/tuna, diapers (sizes 5 and 6) and wipes.

Drop Off Locations and Times:  Drop off at one of the following locations from 12-3pm on Saturday, April 25th

Hope United Methodist Church  5105 S. Dayton Street, Greenwood Village, CO

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints 6061 S. Havana St. Englewood, CO

Covenant Cupboard Food Pantry 5400 S. Yosemite, Greenwood Village, CO

Food Bank: Covenant Cupboard (located at the east side or rear of Presbyterian Church of the Covenant) 5400 South Yosemite St., Greenwood Village, CO 80111

Drop Off Locations and Times:  Drop off at one of the following locations from 12-3pm on Saturday, April 25th

Hope United Methodist Church  5105 S. Dayton Street, Greenwood Village, CO

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints 6061 S. Havana St. Englewood, CO

Covenant Cupboard Food Pantry 5400 S. Yosemite, Greenwood Village, CO

Denver North

Food Bank: Northglenn Christian Food Bank; 1800 E 105th Pl, Northglenn, CO 80233

Special Requests: Cereal, mac and cheese, peanut  butter, canned goods, monetary donations.

Drop Off Locations and Times:  Please drop off at one of these locations:  9am – 12am Saturday April 25, Trailer in parking lot of 100 Malley Dr Northglenn CO 80223

Trailer in parking lot of 3501 Summit Grove Parkway, Thornton, CO 80241 

Food Bank: Thornton Community Food Bank; 8990 York St., Thornton, CO 80229

Special Requests: saltine crackers, mac and cheese, tuna fish, canned vegetables (no corn or green beans) peas, carrots, pasta, large oatmeals (not packets), spaghetti sauce, canned tomatoes, diapers, baby wipes, monetary donations.

Drop Off Locations and Times:  Please drop off at one of these locations:  9am – 12am Saturday April 25, Trailer in parking lot of 100 Malley Dr Northglenn CO 80223

Trailer in parking lot of 3501 Summit Grove Parkway, Thornton, CO 80241 (Summit Grove Building)

Front Range

Food Bank: To benefit the Spanish Branch

Drop Off Locations and Times: 12-5pm April 25

Evergreen Building — 7645 Malamute Dr, Evergreen, CO 80439

and

Jewell Building — 6465 W Jewell Ave, Lakewood, CO 80232

Littleton

Food Bank: St Mary’s Catholic Church Food Pantry & Meals on Wheels

Drop Off Locations and Times: 1-3pm Saturday, April 25 1939

East Easter Ave., Centennial, CO  80122

Parker

Food Bank: Parker Task Force

Special Requests: Rice-A-Roni; fruit snacks; BBQ sauce; Bisquick; flour; homestyle bakes; snack crackers; juice; oil; pickles; mac and cheese cups; graham crackers; Quaker oats; organic food; gluten free; honey; nuts; juice boxes; tomato soup; saltines; coffee; chili; helpers; wheat thins; white beans; hand sanitizer; liquid hand soap; napkins; paper towels; zip lock bags; laundry detergent; cleaning supplies; lotion; body wash; diapers – Size 5/6 ; dishwasher soap; toilet paper; dog food.  Grocery store gift cards in any amount!

Drop off Locations and Times:

April 25th 9-11:30AM

Mainstreet Building

20850 Main Street

Parker, CO 80138

AND

Across Ponderosa HS

7160 Bayou Gulch Rd

Parker, CO 80134

Non-Contact Drop Off:

Drive through and open your trunk and volunteers will get your donation.

Parker South

Food Bank: Parker Task Force; 19105 Longs Way, Parker, CO 80134

Special Requests: Rice-A-Roni; fruit snacks; BBQ sauce; Bisquick; flour; homestyle bakes; snack crackers; juice; oil; pickles; mac and cheese cups; graham crackers; Quaker oats; organic food; gluten free; honey; nuts; juice boxes; tomato soup; saltines; coffee; chili; helpers; wheat thins; white beans; hand sanitizer; liquid hand soap; napkins; paper towels; zip lock bags; laundry detergent; cleaning supplies; lotion; body wash; diapers – Size 5/6 ; dishwasher soap; toilet paper; dog food.  Grocery store gift cards in any amount!

Drop Off Locations and Times:  Empty Grocery bags left on neighbors doorsteps April 25-29.  May 2, homeowners leave bag(s) of donations on doorstep by 8am.  Volunteers will pick up donations by 11:30.

Food Bank:  Helping Hands of Harvest; 826 South Elbert Street Elizabeth, CO 80107

Drop Off Locations and Times: We will ask people to drop off groceries at one of three locations  from 9:00 – 11:30 AM:

Mainstreet Building 20850 Main Street, Parker, CO 80138

Stake Center 7160 Bayou Gulch Road, Parker, CO 80134

Elizabeth Building 34200 CO RD 17, Elizabeth, CO

Drive Through and open your trunk and volunteers will get your donation!

Westminster

Food Bank: Broomfield FISH; 6 Garden Center, Broomfield, CO 80020

Special Requests: Cereal, peanut butter, canned meats, oatmeal, mac and cheese, monetary donations

Drop Off Locations and Times:  10am-12pm Saturday, April 25, 

13370 Lowell Blvd, Broomfield, CO 80023

Food Bank: Growing Home; 3489 W 72nd Ave #110, Westminster, CO 80030

Special Requests: Rice, pasta, canned soups, canned meats, monetary donations, cleaning supplies, gloves and masks for workers and boxes to put food in to give to clients.

Drop Off Locations and Times:  10am-12pm Saturday, April 25, 1951 Elmwood Lane, Westminter, CO 80221

13370 Lowell Blvd, Broomfield, CO 80023

All members of the local faith community are invited to support these efforts! Additional information will be added to this webpage as it becomes available.


The world has turned a bit upside down. Despite attempts at normalcy, COVID-19 is front and center. Busy, popular hang outs are strangely quiet, families on walks make wide berth for passersby, and general traffic is much lighter than usual. 

The good news, though, is that there is always good news. Charity in action is a constant. Signs of the goodness of others, and the ways humanity shows loving kindness appear daily. 

One simple method of continual service is seen through the birth of the Pray Act Trust movement (see PrayActTrust.com or follow #PrayActTrust on social) begun by Denver’s local clergy leaders. Each day of April brings an opportunity to join in group prayer (via public conference call), perform an individual act of service, and show trust in God throughout the process. Examples of service range from doing yard work for a neighbor, calling someone you haven’t talked to in awhile, or even chalking the neighborhood sidewalk with messages of hope and optimism. 

Pastor Del Phillips of The House Worship Center has taken the lead on the initiative. He reports, “Finding triumph in the midst of tragedy is not unfamiliar to people of faith.  In moments of tragedy we discover what is inside of us. The present pandemic tragedy has disclosed we are all born from the same flesh and blood fabric when faced with a virus that ignores race, creed, or color.  We have learned that people are willing to put themselves in harm’s way knowing there is no way to avoid the commitment they made to put others before themselves.  This tragedy has produced evidence to prove when we want to work together, working together empowers us to Pray, Act, and to Trust God.”

Another quiet way that service has been provided is the recent arrival of 9,600 rolls of toilet paper. The most publicized staple to be missing from shelves, toilet paper has become the hallmark of preparedness in this pandemic. Blessedly, coordination between The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and Denver Mayor Hancock’s Faith Council helps alleviate the problem for high risk citizens in the Denver area. Local non-profit senior centers will now be able to provide basic toiletry needs for thousands of people. 

Craig McIlroy, Director of Denver South Area Communication Council was on hand to help with  a delivery of a busload of 100 boxes of toilet paper to a senior living center. Having also helped coordinate the arrival of large food orders to local food banks, he is being the goodness in action. Unheralded by most, but very much appreciated, these gracious acts of service are given without expectation of reciprocity. Of the experience McIlroy reports, “It’s been a heartwarming experience. The ability to do something that means so much to others was really special.” 

Between the prayers, simple daily service, and the bus filled with toilet paper, all stories simply add to the illustration of living charity. While the COVID-19 case numbers grow, so does something else: people showing up with love. In spite of things turning upside down or backwards, facing towards the Savior continues to manifest in showing love for one another. 


While wards are unable to meet in person for Sunday services, members and missionaries throughout Colorado are finding ways through technology to still be together. The Arvada 5th Ward held a live broadcast on Sunday with music and Easter messages. Elder Weir (violin) and Elder Klein (guitar) shared this uplifting musical number, I Know That My Redeemer Lives.


The recent run on pantry staples is evidenced by bare shelves at the grocery store. Yet for those who have been following the advice to keep a supply of food storage on hand, the pandemic-inspired shopping panic has not been as severe. Fox31 News got word of the sage practices of many member families, and highlighted Rachel Lyons and her family on a recent news story. See link below.


A two-year partnership between Columbine Stake and a local elementary school has helped provide thousands of meals to local children. However, with the closing of schools through the rest of the year, local church members wanted to find a way to continue helping. After all, whether or not school is in session, those who need meals still are in need. Fara Sneddon, Director of Communications for the Columbine Stake reports that they usually deliver 200 lunches per weekend. Their new solution involves a partnership with Integrated Family Community Services (IFCS), who were “overjoyed” to receive Columbine Stake’s donations. Once again, the worldwide pivot to find ways to serve continues to show up in happy ways in the community. For further donations, to help with IFCS, or to receive food, visit IFCS website at ifcs.org or call 303-789-0501. “Together, there can be enough.”