The Sauk Valley Foodbank was started in 2001, after the closure of Northwestern Steel and Wire Co., Lawrence Brothers, and National Manufacturing, increased demands on local food pantries brought the need to Carol Siefken who had also lost her job in computer finance from the closures.
The United Way of Sterling-Rock Falls (United Way of Whiteside County) formed a committee and approached the River Bend Foodbank to see whether the area needed a foodbank of its own.
From there, the Sauk Valley Foodbank started with a card table, a desk lamp, paper and pencil, and two pallets of food donated by the United Way of Sterling-Rock Falls (United Way of Whiteside County).
The Sauk Valley Foodbank does not provide food directly to individuals on a daily basis, but to the local food pantries and other agencies. Any 501(c)3 non-profit that gives food away can buy from the Sauk Valley Foodbank, which pays 7 cents per pound for the food and sells for 18 cents per pound.
Area gardeners and businesses – such as Selmi’s Greenhouse and Farm Market in Rock Falls, Mitchell Melons in Tampico, and Blue Freedom Farm Market Inc. in Sterling – also donate to the food bank and we are very grateful for their generosity!