BNOC Receives Bag of Hope Award

Sometimes awards can be overblown... but this one's special.

BNOC Bag of Hope Agency of the Year Award.jpg

On August 11, 2017, the Greater Cleveland Food Bank held its annual Recognition and Awards Banquet at the Intercontinental Hotel in Cleveland, Ohio. The banquet is a special time to recognize the hard work of the hundreds of feeding programs that distribute food sourced from the Greater Cleveland Food Bank.

This year, thanks to the hard work of our leadership and volunteers, BNOC was awarded the Bag of Hope Agency of the Year Award. This is the second time we have received this award, the first being in 2010. The award holds special weight because, as mentioned, the Greater Cleveland Food Bank works with hundreds of feeding programs. So to be recognized by them as the Bag of Hope Agency of the Year tells us we must be doing something right. We would be remiss if we didn't thank our leadership, donors, and volunteers who helped BNOC earn this recognition.

Pictured above (from left to right): Kristen Warzocha (President and CEO, Greater Cleveland Food Bank); Carol Hoeflich (Food Pantry Manager, BNOC); Matt Merendino (President, BNOC); Jessica Morgan (Director of Agency Services, Greater Cleveland Food Bank)

BNOC Featured in IdeaStream News Program

BNOC volunteers distribute thousands of pounds of produce, as featured in this IdeaStream news program.

BNOC volunteers distribute thousands of pounds of produce, as featured in this IdeaStream news program.

At our BNOC produce giveaways, we serve thousands of pounds of fresh fruits and vegetables to people who may not know where their next meal is going to come from. Not knowing where your next meal is going to come from is called "food insecurity". Some people, especially in the rural areas surrounding Bellville, have limited access to fresh foods because they are far from a grocery store that serves healthy foods. We call these areas of limited access to healthy foods "food deserts".

We're honored to be featured in IdeaStream's recent piece called Bringing Fresh Fruit - And Hope - To A Rural Food Desert, which touches on the topics of food insecurity and food deserts in rural areas. IdeaStream filmed the BNOC produce giveaway, as well as an interview with BNOC's Carol Hoeflich, on July 24, 2017. The IdeaStream news piece aired on PBS and public radio one month later. Click on the image above to view the video on IdeaStream's website.

BNOC Announces 2017 Produce Distribution Schedule

Spring is in the air...

And that means free fresh produce is on its way. Residents of the Clear Fork Valley who find themselves scraping to get by - and in need of some fresh produce - will be happy to find that they can count on our Mobile Pantry once a month from April through November, 2017. Our Mobile Pantry Schedule for 2017 will be the 4th Monday of each month, starting in April and ending in November. The hours of this free produce distribution are 11 AM until 1 PM, or until produce is gone. People are served on a first come, first served basis. 

Interested in these free monthly produce distributions? Local residents typically start lining up at 9 AM in the parking lot on Bell Street, across from the Post Office.

New this year:

A valid photo I.D. is required. This is a requirement of The Cleveland Food Bank.

This year's produce distribution dates are as-follows:

Monday, April 24, 2017 (see event page)
Monday, May 22, 2017 (see event page)
Monday, June 26, 2017 (see event page)
Monday, July 24, 2017 (see event page)
Monday, August 28, 2017 (see event page)
Monday, September 25, 2017 (see event page)
Monday, October 23, 2017 (see event page)
Monday, November 27, 2017 (see event page)– If weather is bad, we will cancel.

Two More Free Blood Pressure Screenings Announced!

We are very grateful to Ashland University Nursing School for offering 2 more opportunities for free blood pressure screenings and free blood sugar testing at BNOC. Mark your calendars! The following 2 opportunities for free screenings have just been confirmed:

Wednesday, March 22, 2017
12:00 pm – 2:00 pm
Click here for the calendar view of this event.

Wednesday, April 26, 2017
10:00 am – 12:00 pm
Click here for the calendar view of this event.

We are honored to provide services not only related to our clothesline and pantry, but also add-on services that enhance the health and well-being of our community's residents.

BNOC to Offer Free Blood Pressure Screenings

Mark your calendars!

On Wednesday, February 8th, the Ashland University Nursing School will be bringing 9 Senior Nursing Students to the B.N.O.C. to provide free Blood Pressure Screenings and Diabetic Screenings.

The screenings will run from Noon to 3 PM. This event is free and open to the public. No appointment is necessary.

We are very grateful to Ashland University Nursing School for this opportunity to provide our residents with free screenings. This represents yet another community partnership so crucial to making BNOC more than just a clothesline and pantry, but also a place where people can come together around other life-enriching activities.

View the calendar version of this upcoming event here.


Elaine Bowman to be Honored at Volunteer Appreciation Event

Elaine Bowman

Elaine Bowman

Elaine Bowman was a special kind of person. And we owe the success of the BNOC Clothesline to her.

Elaine died at age 88 on September 22nd. She started the Clothesline many years ago at her church, The Bellville Presbyterian Church, which also began the process of forming the BNOC as a non-profit.

Elaine was in charge of the Clothesline at the BNOC and was very dedicated to making it a big success. She came to the BNOC every morning and worked on sorting clothes and making sure they got hung up in the Clothesline.

While she will be missed, her memory lives in the hearts (and Clothesline) of the BNOC. Please join us in honoring her memory at the upcoming Volunteer Appreciation event on November 13th.

Holiday Simply Give Campaign Kicks Off in Two Days!

BNOC & Meijer have joined forces again to feed local families in Bellville, Ohio.

Simply Give makes giving simple.

People in our community are struggling. And many of our residents are dealing with hunger. But no one should be hungry over the holidays, or any day for that matter.

That's why we're pleased to announce that BNOC has again joined forces with the Meijer Simply Give food pantry donation program this holiday season to help put food on the tables of our local families.

Each Simply Give campaign helps keep local pantries' shelves stocked with food for those in need. But it also fosters a sense of community by encouraging residents to purchase $10 Simply Give donation cards at their local Meijer. These cards are then converted into Meijer food-only gift cards and given to the local food pantry selected by a given store.

BNOC will benefit from donation cards purchased at the local Meijer (1355 N Lexington-Springmill Rd, Mansfield, OH) October 30, 2016, through December 31, 2016. And on November 11th and 12th, every Simply Give donation will be doubled! On those days, we will receive $30.00 for every $10.00 given to Meijer's with a Simply Give Card. The cards are available at the store and at the BNOC.

Please help us fulfill our mission of feeding the hungry in Bellville by purchasing a food donation card during your next shopping trip to Meijer. We also have cards available for pick-up at BNOC, which you can then take to the local Meijer's, along with your donation of $10 or more.

BNOC Announces 2016 Produce Distribution Schedule

Need help getting fresh produce in the Clear Fork Valley?

Bellville Neighborhood Outreach Center will distribute free produce the fourth Monday of every month April through November of 2016.

Every year, come spring, we gear up for our produce giveaways that run once-a-month until late Fall. This year, the produce giveaway dates are as follows:

Monday, April 25th
Monday, May 23rd
Monday, June 27th
Monday, July 25th
Monday, August 22nd
Monday, September 26th
Monday, October 24th
Monday, November 28th

The produce giveaways take place 11 AM until 1 PM (or until produce is gone) in the parking lot across from the Bellville post office (Bell Street).

Meijer Simply Give Campaign Sets BNOC Record

Meijer Simply Give Campaign Sets BNOC Record

Simply Give Campaign yields $76,160 for BNOC.

The Meijer Simply Give Holiday Campaign, which began November 1, 2015, and ran through January 2, 2016, resulted in The Bellville Neighborhood Outreach Center receiving $76,160 - the largest amount generated in all of BNOC's 5 Simply Give Campaigns.

On Thursday, February 4th, BNOC was presented with a GIGANTIC check and $25,960 in gift cards (our second installment) at the Meijer's Ontario store. We received our first installment of gift cards on December 4th - for $50,200 - which gives BNOC a combined total of $76,160 in Meijer gift cards.

The gift cards are to be used to purchase food, baby diapers, wipes, and formula. We have 2 years to use the cards.

The BNOC received $29,740 in donations from businesses, churches, individuals, and organizations. Meijer's not only matched this amount, but also matched 2 X on November 13th and 14th, which were "double days". Meijer's matched $20 for every $10 that was donated on those days. As a result, Meijer's total contribution was $46,420.

Thanks to all the generous donations we've received during this campaign, we can now provide many items that we are unable to get through The Cleveland Food Bank. The BNOC Trustees & Officers would like to thank everyone for their generous donations.

*Photo above taken at Meijer's on Thursday, February 4th - pictured left to right are Kevin Dearth (Trustee), Trent Creel (Meijer's Store Manager), Carol Hoeflich (BNOC Food Pantry Manager), and Matt Merendino (BNOC President).