All are Welcome at Valley Outreach
“Valley Outreach welcomes anyone who comes to us in need of food, clothing, and support navigating resources,” said Megan Stone, pictured above, Director of Services and Implementation. While this is true, most people are from the East Metro, including Washington and Ramsey County. However, we’re happy to serve anyone, regardless of where they live! Megan is responsible for ensuring that everyone who interacts with Valley Outreach, whether it be clients, donors, or volunteers, has a positive experience.
Valley Outreach makes it easy for people to access healthy and culturally connected foods while providing a welcoming place to get assistance with a variety of services. “Some of our clients are also newer to the United States and English isn’t their primary language. Our multilingual strategy is designed to help shoppers, volunteers and our staff team better collaborate and connect with the communities we serve,” said Megan. This effort includes updated signage in the food shelf and client lobby. We also partner with two translation agencies and offer our client surveys in multiple languages.
Additionally, we’ve seen a significant increase in the number of households we serve every month. We believe this is for a variety of reasons – food and gas prices are rising faster than wages, social programs related to the pandemic ending and on a more positive note, word of mouth that we are a good place to go for help. We’re happy to know prioritizing a positive experience is making a difference for the community.
Services Valley Outreach Offers
For those needing food, we try to minimize barriers to access by offering multiple ways to serve people. This includes in-person shopping in our food shelf, home delivery, and curbside pick-up. People are welcome to visit us as many times as they need for food.
In 2020, Valley Outreach also launched StyleXchange. While we had had a clothing program for many years, we wanted to increase our capacity to serve more people. As the demand for basic needs services, like clothing, increased, we expanded our program to serve anyone in need of clothing. We’ve seen a significant increase in the use of this program since our launch.
We also offer client support services, like application assistance, housing resources, and emergency financial assistance. Our Client Support Services (CSS) team is made up of three staff members, including master’s level social workers, plus a Housing Navigator from the AmeriCorps program. The CSS team walks alongside clients, meeting them where they are at when providing deeper support.
Learn how you can support this great work!
If you or someone you know could benefit from our services, we are happy to help. Schedule an appointment by clicking the button below or call 651-430-2739