By Sam Woods
Milwaukee Neighborhood News Service
This story was originally published by Milwaukee Neighborhood News Service, where you can find other stories reporting on fifteen city neighborhoods in Milwaukee. Visit milwaukeenns.org.
If you or someone you know needs food, here is information on where to find food pantries, meal distribution sites and meals for children as well as pay-what-you-can options, meal delivery programs and information on how to get money for buying groceries. This information will be updated regularly.
Do you know of a resource that is not listed here? Text “MKE” to 73224 and let us know!
Find a food pantry near you
If you are looking for food now, the best place to start is by using the following resources. These resources can connect you to food pantries and meal sites within your ZIP code.
The Hunger Task Force has created an interactive map complete with soup kitchens, MPS meal sites, non-MPS meal sites, mobile markets, meal sites for seniors and more. You can search by ZIP code or by resource type to find what you are looking for at a location near you. The map is updated daily, but call the location before you visit to make sure it is still open.
Feeding America Eastern Wisconsin also has an interactive map of food pantries and meal programs located across eastern Wisconsin. The map is updated regularly but call the location before you visit to make sure it is still open.
Feeding America Eastern Wisconsin also has maps of summer meal locations and farmer’s markets that take Women, Infants and Children, or WIC, credits. You can learn more about the WIC program here.
Use the 2-1-1 Wisconsin website to find the food pantry in your neighborhood.
Call Impact at 2-1-1, which can connect you to food pantries and meal programs in your area. You can also text your ZIP code to TXT-211.
You can also text “MKEfood” to 73224 to connect with a reporter about food resources.
Do I need a photo ID to go to a food pantry?
For some, yes. This is because some pantries are restricted in the areas they can serve and are required to verify that you live in the area they serve. However, not all pantries require an ID.
If you are not sure if you need an ID, call the food pantry directly or text “MKE” to 73224 and a News414 reporter can get you the information you need.
Free food options
Tippecanoe Presbyterian Church is serving 300 free meals every Saturday outside of Damascus Gate restaurant, located at 807 W. Historic Mitchell St. Distribution starts at 11 a.m. and continues while supplies last, usually until noon. The Rev. Karen Hagan said this service will continue at this time and location through the end of October.
Some restaurants and grocery stores allow customers to pay only what they are able to pay for food, even if that is $0. However, there is often also a suggested price or way to donate for those who want to support these efforts.
Tricklebee Café, located at 4424 W. North Ave., is a community cafe offering vegan and gluten free options. The café is open from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Wednesday through Sunday.
Call 414-488-2477 to order for pickup or dine in.
greater good(s) MKE, located at 5205 W. North Ave., is a pay-what-you-can produce store open every Wednesday from noon to 7 p.m. and every Saturday from 7 a.m. to noon.
Victory Garden Initiative, or VGI, is a food justice nonprofit and urban farm based in Harambee. In addition to other programming, VGI hosts a pay-what-you-can farmstand every Friday from 3 p.m. to 6 p.m. at 249 E. Concordia Ave. until Oct. 29. Food at the farmstand is grown at VGI’s farm across the street. Donations are accepted.
Emerald City Catering, located at 3555 S. 13th St., said that people can call to reserve leftover meals or meals made with extra produce the company did not use. Meal prices will be pay-what-you-can. Call 414-672-3434 anytime between noon and 5 p.m. Tuesday through Friday to inquire about their pay-what-you-can options.
MKE Good Food Bus is a mobile food truck that offers produce on a pay-what-you-can scale. Cash, PayPal, Venmo and CashApp accepted. Text 414-367-9459 for the exact location of the truck. However, the truck will generally be in these neighborhoods on the following days:
• Tuesdays from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.: Metcalfe Park, King Park, Harambee, Brewers Hill, Lindsay Heights.
• Wednesdays from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.: Sherman Park, Washington Heights, Silver Spring.
• Thursdays from 2 p.m. to 6 p.m.: West Allis, Walker’s Point, Clarke Square, Bay View.
• Saturdays 12:30 p.m. to 5:30 p.m.: Bluemound Heights, Story Hill, Enderis Park.
• On the second Sunday of each month from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.: the parking lot at Sherman Perk Coffee Shop, located at 4924 W. Roosevelt Drive.
• On the third Sunday of each month from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.: Tricklebee Café, located at 4424 W. North Ave.
Get free or low-cost food delivered to you
For those who are 60 or older, Meals on Wheels will deliver meals to you and anyone living with you who also qualifies. You can view eligibility requirements and apply here.
Additionally, for those 60 or older and/or have a qualifying disability in the 53204, 53205, 53206, 53215, 53223, 53224 and 53225 ZIP codes, Friedens Community Ministries will deliver food from one of its four pantries. Call 414-289-6030 to sign up.
Get money for food
Those making less than the maximum income requirements can get EBT credit to buy food through Wisconsin’s FoodShare program. You can check to see if you are eligible here and instructions on how to apply here.
Parents of children who receive free or reduced-price school meals may also be eligible to receive credit to buy food through Pandemic EBT, or P-EBT. Three P-EBT programs focused on school age children, children under 6, and summer meals respectively. You can view eligibility for each program here.
If you are eligible but have not received any funds or a letter saying you are eligible, either fill out an application here by Aug. 18 or call 833-431-2224 and email PEBTsupport@wisconsin.gov.