Numbers Tell the story
Approximately 1,000,000 pounds of food were distributed in 2016. The average number of visits per month was 1,485. This is an average of 57 families per day, six days a week. Overall,4,925 Dunn County residents were served by the pantry. 80% are living at or below poverty level and the remaining 20% are very close. Almost 400 school children and youth received Project SAM (Share A Meal) bags through 10 local schools so they would be sure to have food on the weekend when school meals are not available. Almost 200 seniors received monthly or quarterly supplemental food boxes.
Stepping Stones Shelter
In 2016, 308 people received shelter either at the Stepping Stones Shelter on So. Broadway, at Winter Haven, or at a local motel for short-term stays when the shelters were full. A total of 6,078 nights of shelter were provided (# of people x # of nights), and increase of 21% from the previous year. 25 families received assistance with their first month’s rent or a security deposit when they were able to move into permanent housing. An additional 485 people received assistance with other housing related needs such as locating affordable housing, completing applications and writing appeals.
Community Connections Program
157 people were assisted with supportive services by volunteers such as transportation, small home repairs, and yard work. 608 individuals and families received over $31,000 (total) in emergency financial assistance to help with expenses such as rent, heat, electrical bills, fuel, and clothing. 2,143 people were referred to other programs and community services for things such as Energy Assistance, Food Share, and medical appointment mileage reimbursement. 17,923 volunteer hours were contributed by community members to help make all of Stepping Stones’ programs and services possible.
Stepping Stones offers a ‘hand up’ not a ‘hand out.’