Doing Good For All: Drive-Thru Food Pantry Serves Thousands Monthly In Food Desert

May 7, 2024

Today's good news story comes from Santa Ana, California.

In the heart of Santa Ana, California, where the struggle for consistent access to nutritious food is a daily reality for many residents, a group of individuals decided to make a difference. Their motto, "Doing good for all," became more than just words; it became a guiding principle that sparked a movement of compassion and generosity.

the seva collective food pantry serves thousands
Serving / Credit: The Seva Collective

The Seva Collective, a free drive-thru food pantry, emerged as a beacon of hope during the challenging times of the Covid-19 pandemic. Founded by a dedicated group of Sikhs, this grassroots initiative started small but quickly gained momentum as it addressed the pressing issue of food insecurity in the community.

Today, with a staggering accomplishment of providing four million meals to those in need, the Seva Collective continues to grow and expand its reach. What began with a handful of volunteers has blossomed into a sprawling network of support, with new volunteers joining the cause every day.

"We have cars lining up as early as three or four in the morning," shares Bandana Singh, one of the co-founders of Seva Collective. "It tells us that the need is there, and we want to do whatever we can to help."

the seva collective food pantry serves thousands
Food prep / Credit: The Seva Collective

At the core of Seva Collective's mission is the commitment to not only feed families but also to nourish them with wholesome, fresh foods. Recognizing the link between diet and health, the organization prioritizes the distribution of fresh produce and unprocessed foods to promote healthy eating habits within the community.

"By providing fresh food options, we're not just addressing hunger; we're addressing long-term health outcomes," explains Singh. "It's about breaking the cycle of food insecurity and its associated health risks."

Each month, Seva Collective distributes an impressive 60,000 pounds of fresh food to over 1,200 families, making a tangible impact on the lives of countless individuals. For volunteers like William Tarango, who has dedicated three and a half years to the cause, the rewards go beyond the numbers.

"It's a labor of love," says Tarango. "When you see the cars lining up and the grateful faces of those we serve, you know you're making a difference. It's a privilege to be part of something that brings so much positivity to the community."

Watch the video below.

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