Fall Mountain Friendly Meals is a non-profit public charity under IRS code 501(c)3 consisting of Fall Mountain Food Shelf, Friendly Meals, and Meals on Wheels. As such, donations are tax deductible.
The Fall Mountain Food Shelf
In 2018, families and individuals visited our Food Shelf 12,476 times for help with food and personal hygiene products. Most families visited multiple times throughout the year, with the Food Shelf turning none away. These families averaged 3.8 members and represented 47,975 clients served. We also provided 743 Thanksgiving dinner boxes in 2018.
Mission: To reduce hunger and malnutrition in the Fall Mountain Region of New Hampshire and Vermont, thereby diminishing consequent negative health and social effects on the families and communities we serve. In 2019 we plan to accommodate 16,000 family visits, providing nutritious food sufficient for at least a week of well-balanced meals per household.
The services of the Food Shelf are available to all Sullivan and Cheshire County residents as well as those from surrounding counties and towns. No one is turned away.
We purchase food through a number of resources such as the NH Food Bank, The Discount Food Warehouse, Mr. G’s of Walpole, Keene's Wal-Mart, Ralph’s Grocery of Charlestown and Cheeseco of New England. Some donations of food are received from Bouyea-Fasetts Bakers, Price Chopper and the Walpole Shaw’s Store, as well as local gardeners, farmers and others. Twice a week Panera Bread of Keene donates bread for use in our Friendly Meals Program. We also receive bi-monthly distributions of government surplus food. Local church groups, Girl Scouts, Boy Scouts, 4H, and schools conduct food collection services. Direct purchases of food supplies are also procured with cash donations made annually by a number of public and private foundations such as the the NH Charitable Trust and individuals. We are almost entirely supported by the local people, churches, businesses, and organizations, and we have never run out of food or money to buy food.
The quality of life, the health of our clients and the social impact on our communities is directly enhanced because our young students go to school properly nourished, because our aged poor have access to essential food and staples, and because the displaced and out of work or low income parent can provide the means to nurture their families with shared meals. The social interaction of our clients with our staff also provides an opportunity to check on their well being, providing us the ability to refer our clients to other social services in the area.
We have no paid staff. The vast majority of funds donated are used to purchase food and personal care items. Starting in January 2016 the Fall Mountain Food Shelf program will began leasing the 4800 square feet of the Langdon Municipal Building as well as paying for all utilities. It is our hope that we can successfully attract additional donations in order not to diminish the amount of food we can provide our clients.
Fall Mountain Friendly Meals
The Fall Mountain Friendly Meals Program was formed in 1987 by Mary Lou Huffling and Janice Miles in response to a need to provide meals to local residents who are elderly, homebound, chronically ill, or just in need of the companionship of others along with a good hot meal. Mary Lou Huffling remains the Director of the program.
Every Tuesday and Thursday approximately 30 to 46 people come to the Alstead Fire Station for a communal meal. On those same days, we deliver Meals on Wheels to the homes of approximately 245 people in the surrounding Fall Mountain communities. Volunteers transport the food from the Food Shelf, help cook the meals, set up the meal site, bring the cooked food from the kitchen, serve the meals, package home delivery meals, clean up and deliver the home meals.
The program is all-volunteer with no administration costs, and, as the only meals program in the local area, serves six rural towns. New clients are referred to the program from doctors, hospitals, social service agencies, churches and area people. The program is supported entirely by local donations. Most of the food and supplies have to be purchased but much is donated. There are also some vehicle expenses.
We store the unprepared food in the Langdon Municipal Building, then cooked the meals in the Friendly Meals kitchen on Bragg Lane in Alstead and serve them in the Alstead Fire Station building. The Town of Langdon has generously paid the utilities and provided the space in the municipal building for the storage of food. The Town of Alstead generously provides the space for the kitchen and the space at the Fire Station for the meals and pays the utilities for both.
People come enjoy a nutritious, full-course, home-cooked meal made with love which provides food for the body and food for the spirit.
Meals on Wheels
Between 215 – 230 meals are delivered each Tuesday and Thursday by caring volunteers. There is no charge to the clients for the meals. All food is purchased from donations. Home visits from our volunteers provide companionship and allows them the opportunity to check on the welfare of the clients. Many are elderly and live alone. It also provides an opportunity to make recommendations for further assistance from other social services or health care providers.
Clients are referred from Home Healthcare Agencies, doctors, social service agencies, churches, family members and area people.