Regina Stanford's passion for service has changed the face of her community both on- and off-campus. She is an extremely motivated student whose excellent academic record is augmented by over 1,000 service hours. Regina is the founder of Hummingbird Pantry, Inc., the largest food pantry in north Brevard County that provides food to over 12,500 families through weekly distribution as well as household and hygiene items through the Hummingbird Mission/Thrift Store. Her work to directly address food insecurity in local families has made a deep impact on her community. Ms. Stanford's on-campus engagement has likewise benefited her Eastern Florida State College community. Her non-profit organization provides food to stock the on-campus food pantry which supports her fellow students who are in need. Regina and the board of Hummingbird Pantry hope to expand their reach in the coming years to assist more needy families in the North Brevard area.
I, Gina Stanford, saw the need to feed families while volunteering at a local Voluntary Prekindergarten Education Program in 2012. Witnessing how pre-k children were returning to school almost starving after long school breaks was heartbreaking. I was unaware of how many children depend on the school system for food. When school is closed, many children have little to eat, if anything at all. I realized if the children are this hungry, how hungry must the parents be? After seeing these starving babies I said, “This will never happen again.” Within a month, I provided food for 45 families over the winter break. By 2016 the families that we served grew to 500 families. We moved into a 7,340 square foot facility in January 2018. The new facility came equipped with a walk-in refrigerator and walk-in freezer. This enabled HBP to create more distribution programs. By the end of 2018, HBP had assisted over 12,500 and over 22,500 families in 2019. My goal has always been to end food insecurity, offer support, and empower the community with nutritional food.
Thank you to all involved with the Newman Civic Fellows Award, and for this nomination.