The Wakefield Interfaith Food Pantry was founded in 1982 by members of the First Baptist Church in Wakefield so that no one would go hungry in our community. Clients are residents of Wakefield who have fallen on difficult times due to job loss, illness, age or economic conditions. Anyone who demonstrates residence in Wakefield and needs food can receive assistance knowing that we respect our clients’ privacy, dignity and confidentiality with the belief that sometimes a helping hand is all you need to get back on your feet.
Over the years, the pantry has grown into an interfaith effort with “the expression of faith through service” as its grounding philosophy. In December of 2002, the pantry incorporated as a non-profit organization, received its tax exempt designation under section 501 (c) (3), and brought together members of many religious organizations across Wakefield.
Tina Cooper, a member of the First Baptist Church, played a key role in leading food pantry operations as the coordinator from 1990 to 2001. From 2001 through 2004, The Wakefield Interfaith Food Pantry was run by Director Wendy Dennis and many volunteers while being supported by individuals, organizations, and businesses in our community. Since 2005, the WIFP has been managed by Director of Operations, Maureen Miller, with a dedicated volunteer base.
The Board of Directors now includes members of local congregations as well as other citizens and leaders of Wakefield. To meet the growing needs of its clients, The Wakefield Interfaith Food Pantry, in July of 2010, moved to a larger space at the Americal Civic Center located at 467 Main Street. The Wakefield Interfaith Food Pantry stocks donated and purchased non-perishable food items. The Pantry is also able to offer perishables foods which are purchased with donated funds and received from the Greater Boston Food Bank. Twice a month clients may shop at The Wakefield Interfaith Food Pantry which is considered to be one source of a client’s food needs. Our staff refers clients to complementary agencies for supplemental food and services.
On October 11, 2012, the Wakefield Interfaith Food Pantry was featured in the Wakefield Daily Item newspaper page This Is Wakefield. On May 30, 2012, the Wakefield Daily Item printed a Thank You Letter from the Wakefield Housing Authority.
As The Wakefield Interfaith Food Pantry serves our community, one of our objectives is to communicate regularly with donors, supporters and volunteers.