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4 to 7 p.m., no morning hours

Food Changes Lives
Food Pantry
September 25, 2023

Food Changes Lives

Food Changes Lives

Join us in building a community where everyone can thrive.

Ryan and Lexy* began visiting WayForward’s food pantry after he was laid off from a marketing firm where he had a promising career path. Lexy is in treatment for cancer and has significant medical bills. The couple is using all of their savings to maintain the health insurance coverage from Ryan’s former employer while he looks for another job. The pantry is a critical piece of their stability, allowing them to stay in their apartment.


Food from the pantry has also been a lifeline for Ana and her two children since she arrived here from Venezuela — a country in crisis — to stay with her sister. Ana’s husband has been working in Arizona for the past year and will join them as soon as he can find a job here. In the meantime, WayForward’s food pantry is how Ana ensures that her kids have enough nutritious food to eat.



Jade was struggling to pay rent after unexpectedly needing to care for her infant grandson. High angle of cute newborn touching finger of anonymous parent while lying on soft bed in bedroom
She came to WayForward for financial assistance once the costs of caring for a growing baby hit her monthly budget. Jade regularly visits the food pantry to help bridge the gap, so she can provide a safe and stable home for her grandchild.

Everyone who comes to the pantry has a story that is uniquely their own — what they all share is the increased stability that comes from access to nutritious food. Together, we’re providing food to more people than ever before in our 40-year history.

Demand has doubled in the last year due in part to pandemic-era food and rental assistance from the federal government coming to an end. In addition, the cost of housing continues to rise at record levels – a recent national study found that Madison has the fastest-rising rent of any major city in the United States.

We are proud that we continue to meet this need as we grow and change significantly post-pandemic. We are using more donor dollars to purchase food than we did in the past and we work hard to make strategic choices about what and when to buy to maximize our purchasing power. Your partnership is critical to how we’ll sustain what we offer and ensure that everyone who walks through our door has access to a fully-stocked pantry.

When you give to WayForward, you join a community effort along with other donors, partners, volunteers and staff to provide access to nutritious, culturally specific food for children and adults in Dane County. All donations will be used for the greatest need across our food security and housing stability programs.


*names and identifying details changed