No family should go hungry.
Since our founding, Bienvenidos Food Bank has provided Denver individuals and families with food assistance in a safe, welcoming place. Whether it’s at our storefront market, mobile pantry, or emergency food locations at schools and at other nonprofits, Bienvenidos is an essential source of fresh, healthy food for those in need. Through our partnerships with local grocery stores and other food providers, we are able to turn every $1 cash donation into more than $9 worth of food including fresh meat and produce!
Frequently Asked Questions
Bienvenidos Food Bank opened in 1976 as an outreach program of the St. Patrick Action Center to serve the growing number of struggling Northwest Denver families. The program grew under the leadership of neighborhood activist Ellen Torres, who also helped establish the Northwest Family Assistance Center. When the Action Center closed in 1998, the two organizations merged. Ellen continued to run the all-volunteer nonprofit until her death in 2001. Dedicated volunteers and friends came together and kept the program growing and thriving.
Today, Bienvenidos has grown into a strong, independent, community-based nonprofit organization still focused on hunger relief. We acknowledge Denver continues to grow, change and gentrify, but that makes us more committed than ever to serve families who need food assistance.
Bienvenidos Food Bank serves anyone in need. Our primary service area is Northwest Denver (zip codes 80211, 80212, 80204, and 80216), but not limited to those zip codes. Many of our families live in neighborhoods throughout Metro Denver. We also provide food to our community center partners, including Quigg Newton Homes, Colorado Coalition for the Homeless, Del Norte Veterans Housing, and more. Learn more about our hours of operation.
In 2022, Bienvenidos:
- Served 25,000 Metro Denver residents, a 29% increase in people seeking food from the previous year.
- Gave away more than 450,000 pounds of food, enough to make more than 400,000 meals (1.2 pounds per meal as estimated by the USDA). This food was valued at nearly $800,000.
- Gave away up to 50 pounds of food to each family per visit (7.5 pounds per person per day recommended.)
- Salvaged 180,000 pounds of wholesome food from grocery stores that would have been thrown away.
- Tallied more than 3,600 volunteer hours.
We are a choice pantry, meaning that our clients “shop” for the food they want in a farmer’s market-style setting. Our food comes from Food Bank of the Rockies, the USDA’s The Emergency Food Assistance Program (TEFAP), local grocery stores, and food drives organized and supported by our neighbors, including the USPS Stamp Out Hunger Food Drive and the 9 Cares food drives. We currently supplement our fresh produce supply by purchasing needed fruits and vegetables from Colorado growers along with other food products produced statewide.
At Bienvenidos, we’re able to effectively leverage our relationships with our partners, while efficiently managing our food supply. We use funds received from grants and individual donations to help us purchase additional fresh produce and protein for our families. Our clients take home 50 pounds of food on average at each visit (7.5 pounds per person per day recommended).