South Suburban Center celebrates first anniversary

03/May/19 / 08:00

Northern Illinois Food Bank is celebrating the first anniversary of its South Suburban Center in Joliet – the beautiful, 18,000-square-foot facility that has enabled us to better serve our neighbors in need and our 175 member agencies in Will, Grundy, Kendall and Kankakee Counties.
Here’s a quick roundup of the South Suburban Center’s first year of operations:

  • Nearly 8,500 volunteer hours. Individuals and groups throughout the community donated an amazing number of hours to help pack and sort food in Joliet. In total, these volunteer hours are like adding four full-time team members to the South Suburban Center!
  • More than 2,000 unique volunteers.On average, the South Suburban Center had about 150 new volunteers every month.
  • 1.2 million pounds of food processed.That’s the equivalent of providing 1 million meals for our neighbors in need.

“The South Suburban Center is definitely making a difference for our southern region agencies,” says Archana Liggins, Area Agency Specialist for the Food Bank. “They’re taking full advantage of [having] a closer center.”
One such agency is Saratoga Tower, a residence-based food pantry that is part of Grundy County Housing Authority and located in the town of Morris. In March, Saratoga Tower set a record for the South Suburban Center, picking up nearly 13,100 pounds of food for their residents, which will provide almost 11,000 meals to their community. Brent Newman, CEO of Grundy County Housing Authority, shared that one resident had relied on vending machines for his primary source of food. But now, thanks to the food pantry – and its close proximity to the South Suburban Center – he is able to better access the healthy and nutritious food he needs and deserves.
Joliet (48)
Stories like this are just one of the reasons why we’re so grateful to have the South Suburban Center. To all of the generous individuals, businesses and organizations who have graciously donated time, food and funds: thank you for your support, and for your help in making the South Suburban Center’s first year a success.
Every hour, every dollar and every meal makes a difference. Thank you for doing what matters, and helping us solve hunger in Northern Illinois!

How You Can Help:


  • Volunteer at one of our Centers in Geneva, Rockford, Park City, or Joliet sorting and packing food
  • Donate to help us solve hunger in your community – every $1 donated helps provide $8 of groceries.



Want More?




(1)“Fighting Food Waste With Food Rescue.” Feeding America

(2)“Food Waste FAQs.” USDA.