The mission of Adelante Center for Entrepreneurship is to create wealth in distressed communities through entrepreneurship, community development, and living wage job creation. In 2020, our projects are focused on addressing food insecurity and creating family sustaining living wage jobs in North Chicago, Waukegan, and Zion. Everything we do is rooted in inspiring entrepreneurship and innovation to solve the most difficult projects in distressed and under-served communities.
Adelante Center is uniquely positioned to implement an innovative approach to addressing food insecurity in the midst of the pandemic. Our focus will be on outreach and data collection of the most vulnerable residents. This is key information to best understand their needs beyond just food (mental health, employment) and allows a safe space for those in need to communicate directly with us in a dignified manner. Many residents find themselves food and employment insecure for the first time.
When the Covid-19 shutdown began, Adelante Center joined a collaboration of organizations in Lake County addressing basic needs (food, shelter, utilities). C.A.T.C.H. (community action to counter hunger) addresses food insecurity in the county. Adelante’s goal was to understand gaps between services provided and needs and develop solutions. We are in the food delivery sub-group and coordinate volunteers to deliver boxes from an aggregation point to the pantries. In the first 2 months requests were 250/month; by July that number was 640. The gaps/opportunities are many. Food pantries purchase food, box it, and distribute it to residents. Very little is donated, so they essentially grocery shop for the boxes. There is no connection directly with the farm community in Lake and McHenry counties. Donations from the food bank are poor quality with very few fresh options. Residents are constrained by lack of transportation, Covid-19 positive home quarantines, elderly/disabled, or diet restrictions. No communication occurs with recipients so no additional services are offered. Pantries operate during limited hours/days and it’s undignified for needy clients to wait in line for food that won’t feed their family or that they don’t know how to use to prepare a meal.
Our Post market will provide a profitable marketplace for local farmers to connect directly with premium customers and also a virtual food pantry for clients that have the same needs but greater barriers to accessing food.
Adelante Center for Entrepreneurship is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit program focused on creating wealth and jobs in communities with economic challenges.
Adelante Center for Entrepreneurship 420 West Clayton Street Waukegan, IL 60085