Winter 2023 Update

Ecumenical Food Pantry | Harrisburg, PA

From the desk of Phil Mackey, Board Chair:

Greetings to you, our volunteers, supporters, and friends of the Ecumenical Food Pantry! In appreciation for your on-going support, we share the latest news and updates from the Ecumenical Food Pantry:

Client Trends
The EFP continues to experience a very high volume of clients in need. During the months of December 2022 and January 2023 we have provided food for 4,892 people. For the same time frame last year, we served 2,183 people. A 124% increase! The EFP remains on pace to serve approximately 30,000 people this fiscal year. While sometimes the resources do get strained, the EFP is so appreciative of all the dedicated volunteers and donors who make this all possible each month!

In Gratitude

We are pleased to have received a donation from the Northeast Dairy Association of a new milk cooler. This unit can hold 144 half gallons of fresh milk. We were chosen for this equipment in part due to the high number of clients we serve and also our commitment to providing fresh milk.

The EFP is also grateful for a recent grant received from the Donald B. and Dorothy L. Stabler Foundation. Grants such as this help offset increased costs for food and continue to allow us to offer personal care items. We thank our Executive Director, Deidre Lenker for successfully applying for grants such as this and others over the past year.

Recently, we also received a large bequest from the estate of a long-time donor. Please keep the EFP in mind in your estate planning.


The 3rd Annual Harvest Open Golf Tournament benefitting the Ecumenical food Pantry is set for May 22, 2023. A team of volunteers work hard to make this a special day. Please visit our website for golf registration and sponsorship/donation opportunities.

Friends of Midtown Personals Drive – April 29th 9:30 am-12:30 am. Drop off personal care items during this semi-annual drive with our partner, Friends of Midtown.

Midtown Cinema Personals Collection– Please consider bringing a donation next time you go to the movies and please encourage friends and family to bring a donation when they attend the Midtown Cinema. A large tote is located in the lobby.

Upcoming Organizational Change

Like other charitable organizations, we have arrived at a point in the EFP’s evolution where it is prudent for the EFP to obtain its own, independent tax-exempt status. For the last 50 years we have operated under the umbrella of Messiah Lutheran Church’s IRS 501(c)(3) status. While we believe this is an important step for long range governance, we are also optimistic that it will help the EFP in the pursuit of grant awards and other fundraising.

The EFP Board of Directors has formed a committee to spearhead this effort with support from an external organization specializing in non-profit formation. The overall process to obtain full 501(c)(3) status, including filing articles of incorporation, may take up to 6 months. Once complete, the pantry will operate under the selected name of Harrisburg Area Food Pantry. We appreciate Messiah Lutheran Church’s stated commitment to EFP’s success as this process is undertaken and accomplished. Likewise, we sincerely appreciate your ongoing support as we evolve and grow as a resource for those in need.