“Local Hunger Fighters” is a series that spotlights our awesome supporters and staff who help raise awareness of hunger in our community and motivate people to get involved.
Alfonso Mendez

Local Hunger Fighter: Alfonso Mendez, Operations Manager, Santa Maria Urban Ministry

Alfonso has served as Operations Manager for Santa Maria’s Food Pantry, clothes closet, and educational programs since 2010. According to our Community Partnerships team, when Alfonso sees an additional need, he takes the steps to meet it. He recently came to the Food Bank to propose a new satellite food distribution site at St. Francis Episcopal Church.

How are you helping Second Harvest and our community?

We offer services for our low-income families and homeless population near downtown San Jose. We are part of the Grocery Rescue program and we collect over 10,000 pounds of food on a monthly basis from local supermarkets who donate their surplus food. We have opened a new satellite distribution every Friday at St. Francis Episcopal Church to help those families that do not have transportation.

What inspires you to give?

I like to help other people and be a friendly shoulder they can rely on when they need help. This has always made me feel fulfilled and I am glad I am able to help others through my job.

Why should people care about hunger in our community?

The cost of living in the Bay Area is extremely high and it continues to increase day by day. A family’s income only covers the cost of rent and many times they cannot afford other necessities like food, medicine and other bills. People who have enough to eat and can afford the luxuries that the Bay Area offers should think about and help those who are not as fortunate as them.

Why do you support Second Harvest?

Second Harvest Food Bank has been a partner that has supported our center and our work in terms of food, infrastructure, training, and most of all in fighting hunger. They have always been more than willing to help us work toward our shared cause.

***Meet more of your neighbors helping us build a hunger-free community.