152 results for author: lelzinga


21-Day Equity Challenge Reflection: Luke Elzinga

by Luke Elzinga, Communications & Advocacy Manager, DMARC Three years ago, my partner and I became homeowners, thanks in large part to an FHA first-time homebuyer loan. I feel incredibly fortunate to be a homeowner before the age of 30 - but it's not luck that has led me to this point. Our home on the south side of Des Moines lies in the C-4 section on the Des Moines Redlining Map, which gave it a rating of "Fair" when the map was created in the late 1930's. It was a working class neighborhood then and remains so to this day. Our home is nearly 100 years old, meaning it was around 12 years old when the redlining map was drawn. Last week's ...

21-Day Equity Challenge Reflection: Matt Durham

by Matt Durham, President, DMARC When setting sail on the 21-Day Equity Challenge I was very much looking forward to the content but didn’t know what to fully expect. Over the past couple months, I, like much of the United States, put some intent around educating myself more, reading more, and talking more about racism. As I peeled back the layers of internalized, interpersonal, institutional, and systemic racism it was eye-opening that there was both things I could be better at – and there were surely ways that we as a community could be better. All that being said – the 21-Day Equity Challenge admittingly felt like something that was going ...

DMARC Receives $500,000 from Prairie Meadows

On Wednesday, September 23, Prairie Meadows announced a $500,000 contribution to the Des Moines Area Religious Council (DMARC), along with a $1 million contribution to the United Way of Central Iowa and a $500,000 contribution to the Food Bank of Iowa. "DMARC is honored to receive this incredibly generous contribution from Prairie Meadows," said DMARC CEO Matt Unger. "These funds could not come at a better time, as many in our community are struggling with food insecurity due to the COVID-19 pandemic, economic downturn, and Derecho." The $2 million in total contributions from Prairie Meadow are in lieu of the traditional grant program offered by ...

DMARC and DMPS partnering to provide mobile food pantries at schools

The Des Moines Area Religious Council (DMARC) Food Pantry Network and Des Moines Public Schools have expanded their partnership to provide mobile food pantries at additional DMPS school locations. “The COVID-19 spread in Iowa and resulting economic downturn have left many families without enough to get by,” said Amanda Miller, DMPS Director of Food and Nutrition. “DMARC has been a steadfast partner throughout the years and once again is stepping forward to help keep nutritious food on the table in thousands of homes.” Mobile food pantry sites have been added at 12 DMPS school locations, and join two existing DMARC mobile food pantry ...

Iowa Total Care partnership with DMARC has helped thousands meet basic human needs in Greater Des Moines

This Friday, August 14, Iowa Total Care will be on-site at a free produce giveaway hosted by the Des Moines Area Religious Council (DMARC) and Capital City Fruit from 10am-1pm at the Southridge Mall parking lot. Iowa Total Care will be distributing kids activity booklets and information about their services. This outreach effort is just the latest in an ongoing partnership between DMARC and Iowa Total Care. “DMARC is so appreciative of the support we have received from Iowa Total Care,” said Leslie Garman, DMARC Director of Development & Outreach. “With their help, we have been able to provide essential needs like food, diapers, and personal ...

DMARC and Capital City Fruit to Provide USDA Produce Boxes

Update (6/22/2020): DMARC and Capital City Fruit are excited to announce that produce boxes will continue to be distributed through the DMARC Food Pantry Network through August, and more free public giveaways have been scheduled for the following Fridays: June 19 & 26; July 10, 17, 24 & 31; August 14 & 28. For the next five weeks, the Des Moines Area Religious Council (DMARC) Food Pantry Network will be distributing boxes of fresh fruits and vegetables from Capital City Fruit through the USDA Farmers to Families Food Box Program. The produce boxes will be distributed through DMARC’s network of 14 partner food pantries beginning today, and a ...

DMARC Sees More of the New, Less of the Same at Food Pantries in April

In April, the DMARC Food Pantry Network assisted 12,091 unique individuals, with nearly 1,500 of those people using a DMARC food pantry for the first time ever. DMARC mobile food pantries assisted over 2,000 individuals with another 10,000 individuals assisted through DMARC’s network of partner pantries. Despite increases in first-time food pantry users and visitors to mobile food pantry locations, DMARC saw just two-thirds the amount of people visit food pantries than do in a typical month. Nearly 4,000 people used a DMARC food pantry in January, February, and March, but did not do so in April. DMARC notes a number of factors contributing ...

DMARC Launches Food Pantry Delivery Service

The Des Moines Area Religious Council (DMARC) Food Pantry Network is launching a food pantry delivery service to meet the needs of people experiencing food insecurity in Greater Des Moines at this time. If a person is unable to obtain food by either visiting a food pantry location or by using a proxy to pick up food for them, they may call to request a delivery. DMARC is asking that only those with health, transportation, or other mitigating circumstances use this service. People can call 1-833-DMARC-20 (1-833-362-7220) toll-free to request a delivery. This number will be staffed by trained volunteers and staff from 9:00am to 12:00pm, Monday ...

Matt Unger on “A Deeper Dive” Podcast

DMARC CEO Matt Unger was recently interviewed by Anne Discher of Child and Family Policy Center for their podcast "A Deeper Dive" to discuss how COVID-19 is impacting people living with food insecurity in our state. Give it a listen below!

DMARC Sees Rise in New Food Pantry Users in March

This March, the DMARC Food Pantry Network assisted 18,729 individuals, an increase of 11.8% compared to March 2019. In the last two weeks of March (March 16-31), DMARC saw over 1,000 people make their first visit ever to the Food Pantry Network, four times the amount of new individuals than the first two weeks of the month. First-time food pantry visitors accounted for 16% of everyone who used the DMARC Food Pantry Network in March. DMARC also saw a rise in the number of people who visited a Mobile Food Pantry location in the second half of the month. Over 1,000 people visited a Mobile Food Pantry location between March 16-31, with 252 of ...