We provide the greater Kingston, WA area with emergency
food provision, screened emergency power and rental assistance
for clients faced with shut off notices or eviction and a weekend
take home food program for school children.
Winner of Food Lifeline’s "Excellence in Community Resource Development”, ShareNet's mission is to fight hunger in North Kitsap County in a manner that respects the dignity of those we serve. Our service area includes Kingston, Hansville, Port Gamble, Indianola, Eglon, Little Boston, and some border addresses in Suquamish and Poulsbo.
ShareNet's Thrift Store carries quality, gently used goods at super-bargain prices. All proceeds go right back into the operation, and help fund the food bank.
We’re here to help. All you need to do is give us a call and we will do our best to provide assistance. In the meantime, feel free to take a look around our site to learn more about Sharenet Food Bank and Thrift Store. Check our thrift store page for deals!
Next class in Financial Education series is Thursday, May 16, 5:30-7:00pm, Bayside Church, Kingston. Childcare, dinner, and discounts available. Please call ShareNet to register.
Recent Support Heroes:
Kitsap Sun Unity of North Kitsap Wolfle Elementary School Sons of Norway Trolls' Den Kingston Middle School's 'Fill the Bus' campaign Rotary's Interact Club Kingston High School's Leo Club Kingston High School's Honor Society Skookum Port Gamble General Store Walt Elliot Greater Kingston Kiwanis Suquamish Tribe Crystal & Hope Gurney Kingston Alive Covenant Kingston Rotary Windermere Foundation
You went deep to support ShareNet services with an incredible $73,334 raised for Neighbor Aid. It was a great year for it, because ShareNet has never gone deeper to support the community than in 2013. Compiling our year-end data is a good excuse to look at the themes and trends of last year. The central theme of 2013 was community partnership, going deeper to find linkages that assist those we serve, and improve our community long-term as well as short-term. Your donations mean our core services and important programs like Food to Grow On in our local schools will continue through 2014. Your donation will have a direct impact on local lives in crisis, thank you!
Individual Service Instances:12,846
Food Distributed: 236,911 lbs.
While ShareNet's program for school kids, Food to Grow On, hit an all time high in November 2013, stats for core food bank services were down slightly this year, which translates as more people working after some very difficult years, and a sign that your donations and ShareNet services have a real impact in assisting people get back on their feet. As ShareNet programs are refined beyond core food bank into specialized services for youth and seniors, for example, more volunteer staffing is needed. Drilling deeper into the community meant 7,410 volunteer hours in 2013 , up from 5,009 hours in 2012.
Community Partnerships Leverage Client Services and Your Dollars
A sampling of ShareNet's key non-local partnerships are the Washington Food Coalition, Feeding America, Food Lifeline, Northwest Harvest, Department of Agriculture, Department of Commerce, and the Federal Emergency Management Agency. Locally, ShareNet also works closely with schools, churches, tribes, service clubs, Kitsap Community Resources, and the Kitsap County Food Bank Coalition to amplify our ability to serve. These affiliations place ShareNet in the center of an information share which adds value to our services and thus our clients' lives. The non-local affiliations are not free. They require operating standards, inspections, and reporting which increase ShareNet's workload dramatically. But when you're in the business of basic needs, food or shelter, there's no room for almost getting it right. Our clients are struggling with some of the most basic and most powerful human needs; we can't let them down by doing less.
Education in Partnership with Kitsap Community Resources
In 2013 ShareNet formed an exciting new partnership with Kitsap Community Resources to bring valuable financial education and training to clients in Kingston as well as the general public, including classes on Collections & Debt Repayment Options and How to Get the Most Out of Your Money. Instruction was provided by Peninsula Credit Union and American Financial Services. To boost attendance, ShareNet provided meals and childcare during the classes. Part of ShareNet's mission is to improve our clients' lives in a more long-term way than our daily assistance. Providing education, and making it available to all so that Kingston-area residents don't have to drive to Poulsbo or Bremerton to receive, is part of building a stronger community infrastructure.
Food Drive Central
ShareNet received more food from food drives in 2013 than in any previous time in our history. This was part of a conscious effort to reduce our huge holiday spending by obtaining a portion of it donated through food drives. Volunteer Robin Storey did a lot of work harnessing the power of youth volunteers, particularly. Some highlights were drives held by Wolfle Elementary School, Sons of Norway Trolls' Den, Kingston Kiwanis' Apple Cup, Pacific Northwest Title Company, Kingston Middle School's Fill the Bus campaign, Rotary's Interact Club, Kingston High School's Leo Club, Kingston High School's Honor Society, Kingston Rotary's Haunted Halloween, Skookum, Port Gamble General Store, and Walt Elliot. We'd also like to thank Albertsons and IGA for hosting so many of these, and all who hosted a barrel for us during the holidays.
There were 7,410 volunteer hours worked at ShareNet in 2013. That's the equivalent of about 3.5 full time paid positions in volunteer labor! Volunteers mean everything to nonprofits like ours. Volunteerism is another deep link to our community, and another area in which ShareNet has the opportunity to be more than a food bank. Many in our community who are looking for ways to make a vital contribution find it through volunteering at ShareNet. Many who have been disenfranchised by unemployment, retirement, or disability have found a home at ShareNet, a way to stay connected. ShareNet partners with Kitsap Community Resources on a jobs program offering volunteer opportunities to folks rebuilding their lives.
Food to Grow On
When this program hit an all-time high of 90 kids per week in November 2013, we took a moment to stand back and measure how far Food to Grow On has come since its inception four years ago. We knew the need was there at our four Kingston-area schools (Wolfle Elementary, Gordon Elementary, Kingston Middle, Kingston High), but we did not know how deep it was. This program is one of the most gratifying, if expensive, ways we serve, and has allowed ShareNet to review other opportunities for assisting schools, whether that's supporting Wolfle Elementary School's summer session or looking at the potential to sponsor parenting classes tailored for low-income parents.
As in the food bank, ShareNet relies heavily on volunteers to do the tremendous amount of work it takes to keep a store going. A really dedicated group of volunteers process the donations, do laundry, stock, cashier, and keep the store looking great. Their work allows the store to support a portion of client services. The store had a number of record sales months in 2013, with year-to-year sales roughly consistent with 2012.
Emergency Utility and Housing Assistance
Though need within this program remained high, we again saw positive signs of a slightly improving local economy in that assistance requests were down somewhat from 2012. In 2013 ShareNet provided about $20,000 in eviction and utility shut-off prevention funds, mostly through our partnership with the Poulsbo chapter of St. Vincent de Paul, who administer the funds we designate for residents of our service area. In addition to this service, we have also partnered with the energy assistance administered by Kitsap Community Resources. Instead of clients having to go to Bremerton for an appointment as they used to, they may now schedule in Kingston on Mondays at Bayside Community Church, after going online to www.kcr.org to apply and secure the appointment.
Thanksgiving Holiday distribution: 561 individuals among 170 families served. This is truly a whole-community event, with more people and groups than can be counted here participating.
Back to School Supplies Event: 185 school children served, with remaining supplies donated to local schools. Thanks to Crystal Gurney for chairing this event.
Christmas Gift Shop: 154 children and teens served. Thanks to Laureen Davis for chairing this event.
On behalf of our staff, volunteers, and services, with deep thanks,