Our Story

At the Blue Ridge Area Food Bank we are driven by our core beliefs that hunger is unacceptable; that everyone deserves access to enough food; that food sustains life and nourishes health; and that we are called to serve neighbors in need without judgement.

We were founded in 1981 in Staunton, VA by a 5-member board, including the man who would become the first Executive Director, Phil Grasty. By the end of the first year, the Food Bank distributed 233,000 pounds of food to the hungry through 202 member agencies in 18 counties along the spine of the Blue Ridge Mountains. At that point in time, our work was considered a “major experiment in food banking” because of the rural nature of our service area.

As the need for emergency food assistance grew in other areas of the Blue Ridge region, the Food Bank expanded and relocated to a new facility in Verona, VA, now the headquarters of the organization. Three other branches were established in Charlottesville, Winchester and Lynchburg between 1982 and 1985.

Where We Are Today

Today we serve 25 counties and 8 cities on either side of the Blue Ridge through distribution centers in Charlottesville, Lynchburg, Winchester and our headquarters in Verona. We provide nutritious food to 114,400 people each month through a far-reaching network of 215 food pantries, soup kitchens, schools, churches and other nonprofit groups.

We are members of Feeding America, a national organization supporting more than 200 food banks across the country, and the largest domestic hunger relief agency in the U.S.  We are also members of the Federation of Virginia Food Banks, an association of the seven food banks in Virginia.
See our latest Network Fact Sheet

Our Mission & Vision

Our MISSION is to feed hungry people through a network of community organizations in central and western Virginia, and to engage our communities in the fight to end hunger locally and nationally.

Our VISION is a hunger-free Virginia in a hunger-free America.

Our Values

Respect
Integrity
Passion
Service
Commitment
Accountability
Diversity
Stewardship

We are the largest organization alleviating hunger in western and central Virginia, serving communities over 12,000 square miles.

Counties and Cities We Serve

Albemarle County
Amherst County
Appomattox County
Augusta County
Bath County
Bedford County*
Buckingham County
Buena Vista City

Campbell County
Charlottesville City
Clarke County
Culpeper County
Fauquier County
Fluvanna County
Frederick County
Greene County

Harrisonburg City
Highland County
Lexington City
Loudoun County
Lynchburg City
Madison County
Nelson County
Orange County*

Page County
Rappahannock County
Rockbridge County
Rockingham County
Shenandoah County
Staunton City
Warren County
Waynesboro City
Winchester City

* These locations are shared with another food bank.