A portion of funds raised during the MN REALTORS® Rebuilding Community Giving Campaign was given to the Longfellow Community Council to help damaged neighborhood businesses recover. The unrest last summer destroyed the grocery stores in the Longfellow neighborhood. Donations after the unrest prompted Du Nord, a craft spirits distillery in the neighborhood, to establish a permanent food shelf, Du Nord Foundation Community Market.
Melanie Majors, Executive Director of Longfellow Community Council, shared the following with MAR:
There has been no permanent food shelf in Greater Longfellow and one of our goals was to support food security for residents. One of our other goals was to support small businesses owned and operated by BIPOC (Black and Indigenous People of Color). Du Nord Distillery is owned and operated by Chris Montana who is African American. We were able to fulfill a portion of two of our goals. The MAR funds really helped us to respond quickly to some emerging community needs.
The Community Market opened on February 1, 2021, with a team of two staff and eight to 12 volunteers per week. They are currently open three days per week (Monday, Wednesday and Thursday) supporting neighbors with fresh foods and household supplies. In the first 3 months, they have served 1,362 households with a total of nearly 59,000 pounds of food.
They are located at 3140 Snelling Avenue, attached to Du Nord on the corner of the building.
Additional information from Tricia Trowbridge, Manager of Nord Foundation Community Market:
- We invite our neighbors to place an order online, volunteers pack the order, and neighbors arrive on the day and time they select to receive their order through curbside pick up.
- We are open to all – no restrictions. We invite neighbors to order as needed, our inventory changes slightly each week with a large offering of local (and/or) organic produce that is culturally familiar.
- Our most popular items are fresh eggs, jalapenos, mangos, cilantro, cooking oil, Maseca, Nopalitos, and diapers.
- We would not be able to do this without the support of neighbors who are able to give of their time volunteering – 262 hours over the past 3 months.
Pictured below are some of what they offer and workers packing orders: