Members of the Dunedin Social Services committee acknowledge that through their research, in our community many families were hungry, felt forgotten and didn’t know where to turn for help. Surveys indicated that families were facing poverty from lost jobs, illness, financial setbacks, medical bills, etc. What little money they had was used to pay rent and utilities having to cut back on food. There were very few food pantries in Dunedin. The local churches attempted to provide food, clothing, pay utility bills but were not staffed to fill the overall need.
As a result of 4 years of surveys, meetings, discussions, and the hunger issue growing, Ed Hughes and recruited board members formed Dunedin Cares, Inc. a Florida corporation with 501(c)3, nonprofit status.
It was brought to the attention of The Board of Directors of Faith Lutheran Church that Dunedin Cares was looking for a permanent location for their food pantry. The Board approved, allowing Dunedin Cares, Inc.. to operate the Food Pantry in a room located in the back of the church. The 600 square foot space comes with it own rear entrance that works well for food distribution.
The Food Pantry opened it’s doors November 12, 2015 for the first distribution of food bags to Dunedin residents in need, providing food, help and hope. Over time we evolved from providing food bags to our clients to our current “Supermarket ” approach which encourages our clients to choose the items they would prefer.
Over the first two years Dunedin Cares has had a steady 15% growth of clientele each month. So by the fall of 2017 Dunedin Cares had outgrown their current donated space. Two local churches have been most generous in reaching out to us. One has been providing us space and is now going to provide the property where our donated Modular building will be located. The generous donation of the building from the other church is just incredible. The donated modular was moved to our new location and we began major renovations so as to comply with Public Safety codes. The modular upgrades were completed, inspections were passed and we were ready to greet our clients at the new Food Pantry on April 4, 2018. With the opening of the new food pantry, Dunedin Cares has tripled our square footage. We could not have done this without the generous donations and the many hours our volunteers gave. Thank you.
Board of Directors
Joe Mackin President
Mike FarrellVice President
Rev. Deacon Cindy RoehlSecretary
Edward (ED) T. Hughes – Vision Founder and First President 2015 – 7/25/19