The Squirrel Hill Community Food Pantry was established in 1998 through a grant from the Jewish Healthcare Foundation to provide food, support and hope to the hundreds of families and individuals in Squirrel Hill that live with the threat of hunger.
Our programs focus on food distribution to address the immediate issue of food poverty and on support and resource coordination to address its underlying causes.
We serve more than 850 people a year, half of whom are seniors, many of whom are working families with children, households affected by layoffs or disabled adults. This number is expected to increase as the current economic crisis continues to hit families affected by layoffs, escalating costs for basic needs and diminished savings.
Originally established as the Squirrel Hill Kosher SuperPantry, in 2007 we changed our name to the Squirrel Hill Food Pantry to better reflect the community we serve. Although we were a kosher food pantry, we are a member of the Greater Pittsburgh Community Food Bank and serve all families and individuals who meet income requirements and live in the 15217 zip code area.
In 2010, we moved to our current location on Hazelwood Avenue, updated our name to include the word “Community” to strengthen our key message of inclusivity and changed our model of food distribution.
We moved to a client choice model (conceptually similar to a grocery store) and, although we are no longer a kosher food pantry, we maintain a kosher section for those clients who keep kosher. The Va’ad HaRabanim of Pittsburgh continues to advise SHCFP with respect to the kosher food certification necessary to properly serve Pantry clients who keep kosher.
Because we are the only food pantry in Southwestern Pennsylvania committed to meeting the needs of those who keep kosher homes, SHCFP also serves those outside the 15217 zip code area who qualify for food assistance and require kosher food.
The Squirrel Hill Community Food Pantry is a division of Jewish Family & Children's Service of Pittsburgh, an independent, nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization. We serve all who qualify without regard to race, color, religion, ancestry, national origin, place of birth, sex, sexual orientation, familial status, age, handicap or disability.