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WCAZ Radio News



Macomb-based nonprofits Western Illinois Regional Council (WIRC) and
Good Food Collaborative (GFC) are excited to announce they are now partnering in the fight against hunger in
McDonough County, Illinois. The two organizations will open a choice-based food pantry at the WIRC office in
Macomb to empower people in need to choose healthy options to feed their family.
Since they formed in 2021, GFC has seen increasing demand for their mobile food pantry program that delivers
food directly to the homes of people in need. Recently, GFC has been exploring collaborations with other
nonprofits to help coordinate their food outreach programs with other providers.
WIRC’s mission is to partner with people and communities to improve lives and neighborhoods, and has operated
their own food pantry for many years. Roger Pavey, Executive Director of WIRC, saw the opportunity for the two
organizations to offer a food pantry that is welcoming, supportive, and offers a variety of healthy, delicious food
“The Good Food Collaborative’s customer-informed approach to hunger meets the needs of our community.
Working together, we will create an inclusive choice-based food pantry option unlike anything previously offered in
Macomb,” said Roger Pavey, WIRC Executive Director.
In late-December 2022, GFC will start moving into the former clothing center area of the WIRC office located at 133
West Jackson Street in Macomb. The public space will be remodeled to look and operate like a grocery store, with
office space for GFC personnel being added in adjoining rooms. All of the food items in the pantry will be free to
people in need. Good Food Collaborative will continue to provide home-delivered food pantry services to
households that cannot come to the new food pantry store because of transportation or health barriers.

Besides providing space, WIRC will also collaborate with GFC to find grant funding opportunities, assist with
marketing the program, and provide other resources as-needed to make their shared vision a reality. WIRC and
GFC will both maintain their status as separate organizations. After the transition, the WIRC clothing center will
remain closed and the new food pantry is expected to open in that space sometime in early 2023.
Both nonprofits are excited for what the future will bring with their collaboration, and look forward to seeing the
positive changes in McDonough County that come from offering a choice-based food pantry.
“We are currently serving over 500 hundred people a week with our mobile food pantry, and now our storefront
food pantry will allow users to pick the food they want to feed their families, just like we all do when we go to the
grocery store. We are very excited about the collaboration with WIRC and thank all the members of the community
that support us in our efforts,” says Richard Chamberlain, Board President GFC.
Western Illinois Regional Council (WIRC) helps people and communities. The agency offers a wide range of social
service programs and community development grant programs to improve the quality of life in the western Illinois
counties the agency serves. To learn more, call WIRC at 309-837-2997, find them on social media, or visit
Good Food Collaborative (GFC) brings good food and people together. Their food-based programs include Kids
Cook and Food U—which teach children and adults how to cook healthy meals, and a mobile food pantry. To learn
more, call 309-326-3049, find them on social media, or visit
WIRC and GFC are equal opportunity employers and providers.

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