Eliminating Hunger and Food Insecurity at their Roots

Cook and culture

Written by: cookandculture | Edited by: Cambria Sinclair & Carol Coutinho

The Marcus Harris Foundation (MHF) was launched in 2018 by Marcus Harris, a poet, author, philanthropist, and community advocate. Each of the MHF’s programs addresses an issue about which Marcus cares deeply, whether education, domestic violence, food insecurity, or general community improvement. Through the organization’s efforts, Marcus aims to provide essential support for those who need it most, particularly kids and families who’ve been marginalized by systemic and cultural inequities.

Neighborfood Express, the MHF’s newest program, is designed to tackle the root causes of food insecurity, in an effort to eliminate hunger for thousands of disadvantaged kids and families. Through the program, the MHF provides free healthy meals and groceries to residents living in food-insecure neighborhoods, via weekly contactless deliveries made directly to their homes. In addition to hunger relief, Neighborfood Express connects the individuals to the partner agencies, offering support services for such issues as addiction recovery, homelessness, and mental health advocacy. In doing so, the MHF strives to meet every possible need of the kids and families it serves.

Since its launching in November, Neighborfood Express has provided more than 600 free meals and over 2000 pounds of food to nearly 700 people living in food-insecure Southeast Raleigh (NC) neighborhoods. Also, more than 300 free books have been given to kids of all ages. The MHF’s ultimate goal in its ongoing food security efforts is to open a free grocery store, where individuals who’ve fallen on tough times can “shop” at no cost for all their food-related needs for up to a year, while also being connected with partner agencies that can further assist them. This will help the organization be even more impactful in permanently eliminating the social determinants of food insecurity.

We just launched the MHF two years ago, and we already have five strong programs serving thousands of people each month. I never imagined the organization would have such a tremendous impact in so short a period of time, but I’m thrilled to be able to help so many people in need. I’m excited to see how many more lives we help change for the better as we continue to grow in the months and years to come.

Marcus Harris

Founder and Executive Director, Marcus Harris Foundation

For the ten years I’ve known Marcus, I’ve been transformed by his loyalty and inspired by his work ethic. He somehow finds the time to volunteer, reach back, and give back to his community, all while serving as a beacon of moral excellence. I’m proud to be his friend and a board member of The MHF.

Askia Dunnon

Board member, Marcus Harris Foundation

I joined The MHF because I was inspired by Marcus’s genuine dedication and desire to help make a positive difference. Through the work we do, we’re able to solve problems in a holistic way by addressing root causes and social determinants – and none of it would be possible without Marcus’s commitment and leadership. I’m excited to be a part of such a crucial organization providing meaningful, transformative change for so many people throughout the community.

Robin White

Board member, Marcus Harris Foundation (MHF)

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