History

Father Daniel Madigan founded Sacramento Food Bank & Family Services (SFBFS) in the basement of his Oak Park church in 1976. Pained by watching so many people, including small children, go hungry on the streets of Sacramento, he called together a small cadre of compassionate volunteers to tackle the problem. Over time, the number of facilities, staff and volunteers grew to meet the ever increasing need in Sacramento. His passion for helping individuals and families in need is still alive and well in the wide array of programs and services offered by SFBFS.

SFBFS currently operates three large facilities, a campus of two buildings and a Demonstration Garden in Oak Park and a learning center in North Sacramento, as well as food distributions at a dozen community sites throughout Sacramento. SFBFS serves neighborhoods with families experiencing some of the highest rates of poverty, unemployment, child abuse and neglect, malnourishment and overall hardship in the Sacramento area. Over three decades, the number of programs and services offered by SFBFS grew from food and clothing to include adult education, child development and technology. Most recently, economic trends and developments caused SFBFS to modify service delivery and in 2008, SFBFS began distributing groceries in a mobile format to reach families in need through the Food program.

SFBFS runs a very lean, grassroots organization with an incredibly efficient, professional staff of 40 and a volunteer workforce of over 5,500 annually. SFBFS continues to meet the increasing demands for services by leveraging donations when purchasing food, baby supplies and reading materials for pennies on the dollar.  Through six diverse programs, SFBFS provides free emergency goods and services to 25,000 men, women and children each month.

SFBFS provides goods and services at no cost due to the generous support of donors, through individuals and company contributions, as well as special events. SFBFS hosts the annual Run to Feed the Hungry every year on Thanksgiving Day. Nearly 30,000 Sacramento residents now turn up on their day off to spend time with family and raise awareness of those less fortunate in our community, generating nearly $1 million to support programs and services at SFBFS every year. For nearly two decades, SFBFS' board member Ilham Saca and her husband Anton hosted a black-tie event, the Saca Benefit Ball, to raise funds and awareness about the organization. Through silent and live auctions, as well as dinner tickets, the event raised $3.5 million in its 17 years of operations. SFBFS also partners with Rogers Jewelry Co. to host an event each spring called Race for the Ring. This scavenger hunt for jewelry uses clues sent via text message to challenge participants to solve riddles throughout Downtown and mid-town Sacramento.

Please join us as a volunteer or supporter and help make a positive impact in the lives of families in need.

SFBFS Timeline

1976 - Father Madigan founds Sacramento Food Bank & Family Services as as a non-profit organization. Food is distributed to
           families in need and eventually becomes a separate program: Food.
1983 - Sunday Lunch program begins serving meals and eventually bagged lunches to hundreds of clients on Sundays.
1988 - Clothing program opens, providing clothing to men, women and children at no cost.
1989 - Community Learning Center opens, offering tutoring for adults in math, reading and ESL (program later named Adult
            Education
)
1991 - Havens' Transitional Living provides housing for homeless families with children. 
1992 - Mother-Baby program opens its doors to mothers and fathers seeking help in October. Parents can now receive formula
            and diapers by attending educational parenting workshops.
1992 - Anton and Ilham Saca host the first Saca Benefit Ball, a black tie gala that raises $3.5 million over 17 years.
1993 - A group of senior volunteers comes together to form the Bridge Builders, a dedicated crew who assists in various
            programs until the program is sunset in 2010.
1993 - Run to Feed the Hungry's inaugural event on Thanksgiving day draws 800 participants.
1998 - Child Services began offering programs for young children. One component of the program offers tutoring to elementary
            aged youth in an after-school setting, later becoming its own program Youth Academy. The other component is a
            co-operative child care program for 1-5 year olds, later named PlayCare.
2000 - Women's Wisdom Project (later named Women's Wisdom Art) is adopted by SFBFS and offers art classes to women
            overcoming difficulties. The program runs for 12 years.
2000 - Ride Against Hunger sets off to raise funds for SFBFS through a competitive bicycling event. The event runs for four
            years.
2000 - Computer Clubhouse begins offering technology training to teens through a new youth-centered program.
2004 - SFBFS breaks ground on a new on second facility in North Sacramento.
2004 - Members of the real estate and financial industry come for the Brokers' Punt, Pass and Kick, a football competitions that
            raised $250,000 over six years.
2005 - SFBFS opens doors to a new facility in North Sacramento, the Saca Community Learning Center.
2006 - Father Madigan retires from SFBFS.
2008 - SFBFS began distributing food in the community as a new component of the Food program throughout North Sacramento.
2008 - SFBFS partners with KCRA to offer the Oak Park facility as a drop off location for turkeys and the first Turkey Drive is
            born (2, 653 turkeys are collected the first year).
2009 - Rogers Jewelry begins hosting Race for the Rock (later termed Race for the Ring) to raise funds for SFBFS.
2009 - Sunday Lunch program closes as well as food service from SFBFS triple-wide trailer in North Sacramento in preparation
            for an expansion of the Food program through food distributions in the community.
2010 - Havens' Transitional Housing program closes after years of successfully transitioning families to more stable housing. The
            space where the homes stood will be used to construct a new educational facility.
2010 - SFBFS breaks ground on a new 22,500 square foot Education & Tecnhology Center and Demonstration Garden.
2011 - SFBFS launches the new Senior program to provide companionship and fresh produce to seniors in Sacramento.
2011 - Mother-Baby program is sunset and SFBFS' new Parent Education program is introduced.
2012 - Youth Education program forms combining PlayCare, Youth Academy and Computer Clubhouse into one program that
            serves children. Youth Education now offers two components; Playcare Academy for 1-5 year olds and After School
            Academy for 6-18 year olds.
2012 - SFBFS opens the new Education & Technolgoy Center which offers Adult Education, Parent Education and Youth
            Education programs to the community as well as classes in the Demonstration Garden.