THE FOUNDING SERVICES OF FOCUS
FOCUS FOOD PANTRY
The FOCUS Food Pantry originally began in 1975 as the South Wood Emergency Pantry Shelf (SWEPS) to provide food to area residents only in emergency situations. SWEPS expanded dramatically over the last 45 years to now providing food on a regular basis to those in need in South Wood County. In 2020, SWEPS merged with The Neighborhood Table and the Rapids Family Backpacks program to become FOCUS. In 2020, the pantry provided food, hygiene products and educational services to over 6,300 households and nearly 18,500 people.
FOCUS NEIGHBORHOOD MEALS
FOCUS Neighborhood Meals is a free community meal service that began as The Neighborhood Table (TNT) in 2003. The first meal was served New Year's Eve to approximately 50 people. TNT has grown substantially since 2003 and pre-COVID was offering meals every Thursday and the last two Tuesdays of the month. Approximately 150 meals were served on Tuesdays and about 280 meals each Thursday. Now meals are served every Thursday until further notice.
FOCUS FAMILY BACKPACKS
FOCUS Family Backpacks was established in 2011 as Rapids Family Backpacks to assist children with food insecurity over the weekend while away from school. Students take home a nondescript backpack filled with food items and a Kwik Trip voucher for perishable food items. The program currently runs from October to May and assists about 85 families.