Become a Member Agency
The Food Bank is currently accepting new member applications from 501(c)(3) organizations located in the following counties that are distributing food to the needy, ill, or children: Cherokee, Cleburne, St. Clair, Shelby, and Talladega. Limited new member opportunities also exist in Blount and Jefferson Counties. Please contact us to learn more about those opportunities. If your food distribution organization is not located in one of these counties, we are happy to add your organization to our wait list for your county.
To become a member of the Community Food Bank of Central Alabama, your organization must be:
- A recognized 501-c-3 organization by the IRS (and show proof of such designation through a Letter of Determination) or a church recognized as tax exempt (churches will either have their own 501 (c)(3) Letter of Determination, or they will need a letter stating they are in good standing from their parent denomination’s state offices.) [Read "14 Points of Eligibility" for more information]
- Organization must agree to provide food free of charge to the needy, ill, elderly, or minors through their main food program.
- Agencies must also show proof of adequate storage facilities for the type of program they are running. No definite requirements for space and storage are set, but are determined appropriate on a case-by-case basis as all organizations have different programs
To be considered for membership with the Food Bank, your organization will first need to complete a Membership Information Request form. Return the completed document to the Food Bank. A member of the Agency Relations staff will then contact you regarding the availability for new members in your County. If we are accepting applications from organizations in your County, you will be forwarded an Application and Membership Guidelines. If the Food Bank is not currently accepting new member applications for your County, we will be happy to add your organization to our wait list.
- Once the food bank has received back your completed application packet, we will make an appointment with you to come out to your site and do a site monitor. At this time, food bank staff will sit down with you to go over the details of your program, and examine your space and refrigeration to determine if it is acceptable for storing product. Please keep in mind the following:
- We have no set requirements for the size of storage; however, it must be kept in a locked area, climate controlled, and clean and free of evidence of rodents and insects.
- Refrigerators and Freezers must be clean and free of ice build-up
- You must show proof of some sort of shelving or ability to keep food up off the ground, whether it is traditional shelving or the use of construction pallets to keep food at least 2 inches off the ground.
The site visit is a time for food bank staff to get to know potential new member agencies, and also to verify that all information provided in the application is accurate. Upon completion of a site visit, all new agencies are then presented at the quarterly meetings to the Food Bank Board of Directors for ultimate approval.
THINGS TO KEEP IN MIND:
- The Food Bank has a shared maintenance fee of $.16/pound for our member agencies (this translates to $160 for 1,000 pounds of food).
- As part of your membership, you will be required to keep various records documenting your use of Food Bank food, including maintaining monthly reporting documents that identify the clients served, by age and gender.
- All member agencies are monitored at least every two years by food bank staff to ensure compliance. In addition, if your agency chooses to receive USDA Commodity food, it is also possible you will be selected for an official state audit of your food program.
- For addition information about guidelines for membership, download the Membership Guidelines and Information packet (PDF).
- You will be required to submit monthly reports to the food bank breaking down the number of people you served by gender and age. These reports are due by the 20th of each month, and are mailed along with your monthly statements, or may be downloaded from this site.