Thanks for your interest in running a Food & Fund Drive! It’s a great way to get your office, group, school or congregation involved in giving back to the community.

Here is a list of Frequently Asked Questions to help you in launching, organizing and running your drive.

  • What is a Virtual Food Drive?

    You can create your own customized Virtual Drive donation webpage so you can raise funds online — a virtual food drive! It's easy to get started. Just fill out the online registration form, and your team’s virtual drive page will be automatically generated. Then send everyone you know a link to your customized giving page and ask them to support the Food Bank through your virtual drive. When registering for a virtual drive, you don't need to enter a barrel delivery request— this is optional. View a sample team page here.

  • How do I set up my Virtual Drive page?

    When you fill out the online registration form, your virtual drive page is automatically generated. As you complete the registration form, you'll be prompted to enter your team’s information, goals, upload a logo or an image of your choice, place a barrel order (if applicable) and create a customized team greeting. Once your registration is approved, you'll receive an email with login instructions to your coordinator's page where you can access your team’s personalized web page. Through your coordinator's page, you can also make blog postings, post photos, and share your page on social media to encourage others to get involved in your drive!

  • How do you track my totals?

    For virtual drives, totals are tracked on a thermometer graph on your customized webpage. Every $1 donated to your page appears on within five minutes, and if your team is collecting food as part of their drive, every five pounds donated will receive one point. Totals are also tracked offline for groups not requesting a webpage, and we can provide a report upon request with detailed donation information.

    Team members who donate by clicking on the “donate now” button on your team page will have their donations reflected in the point total within 5 minutes. Donations by check can also be made, but please allow 5-7 business days upon receipt for them to be manually uploaded into your team’s total. Note: when submitting by cash or check, please mark your donation with your team or group name and "Food and Fund Drive" so that we can accurately track your progress.

  • How do I register for a Food Drive?

    It’s easy! Just fill out the online registration form with your group or organization’s information. You'll also be able to order food collection barrels while you register. Once your registration is approved, you'll receive an email with a URL link to your customized donation webpage so that you can track your progress online. You'll also receive a separate email to confirm your barrel delivery and pickup details.

  • How do I get barrels for my drive?

    If you'd like to have food collection barrels delivered, you can order them online when you register your drive and request your preferred delivery and pickup dates. On the date of your confirmed barrel delivery, our driver will arrive at your location with your barrel and will return for pickup on your confirmed pickup date. Please be sure to note any special delivery instructions when you register.  

    When requesting barrels, we ask that you commit to collecting at least 100 pounds of food (about 2/3 of a barrel). If you're not sure you'll collect 100 pounds, you can use your own collection containers and then bring the donations to one of our warehouses or other drop-off locations throughout San Francisco or Marin. Please keep in mind that we may not be able to accommodate all barrel delivery requests, as our resources are limited. We also ask that you allow at least 48 hours from registration for your barrels to be delivered.

  • How do I schedule a barrel delivery and/or pickup, and what are the hours?

    Delivery and pickup dates are requested via the online registration form. Barrel deliveries and pickups are scheduled Monday-Friday from 8:30 am to 3:00 pm. Due to our limited resources and impacted schedules, it's difficult to accommodate a narrower, more customized delivery time windows

  • My barrel is full. How can I arrange a swap?

    If your barrel fills up more than 5 business days before your final pickup is scheduled, we can have our driver come out to your site to pick up the full barrel and leave an empty one behind so that you can collect more food. Please fill out our Barrel Swap Form, and we will get your swap scheduled as soon as we are able.

    Due to our limited resources, please allow up to five business days for us to accommodate your swap. Because we are not always able to get to your location immediately, please contact us for a swap when your barrel becomes 2/3 full.

  • Can I drop food off at the Food Bank?

    Yes! We are happy to accept drop-off donations at both our San Francisco and Marin locations. Our San Francisco warehouse at 900 Pennsylvania Avenue is open for food donation drop-offs Monday-Friday from 8:30 am to 3:00 pm. Our Marin warehouse at 75 Digital Drive in Novato is open for food donation drop-offs Monday-Friday from 8:30 am to 5:00 pm. We also have drop-off locations throughout San Francisco and Marin for your convenience.

  • What foods are needed most?

    Our most needed items are:

    • Tuna, canned meat
    • Peanut butter
    • Soup, chili
    • Beans
    • Cereal
    • Canned fruit and vegetables
    • Granola bars

    No glass or perishable items, please!

    Some general guidelines:

    • Only donate items that you would eat.
    • Check that items are still within their “Use before” date.
    • Avoid glass items, which can break.
    • Avoid perishable items like dairy, meat, chicken, fish, and fresh fruits and vegetables.
    • We can only accept unopened items. We can accept opened packages if the internal packaging is still intact.
  • What does the Food Bank provide for my drive, and how do I get my materials?

    The Food Bank can provide all of the basic materials needed for a drive including a customized fundraising page, food barrels and posters with a list of most-needed food items. Check our Helpful Resources page to find the downloadable poster and sample text for your emails to drive participants.

  • Where do my donations go?

    Because we can leverage our bulk purchasing power to supplement food donations from manufacturers and farms, we're able to distribute $6 of food for every $1 donated. And 96% of all donated resources directly support our programs.

    Food donations get sorted by our volunteers and then distributed to our 450 community partners who use it to prepare meals for those in need or to supplement the larger deliveries they receive from us. All food donated goes directly into the community.

  • Can I donate by cash/check?

    You bet! To assure that all donations are counted toward your team goal, please make checks payable to the SF Marin Food Bank, and be sure to include your company or team name. Please send all donations via FedEx, mail, or messenger to:

    SF-Marin Food Bank
    Attn: Food and Fund Drives
    900 Pennsylvania Ave
    San Francisco, CA 94107

    Please note, if you are sending cash, we recommend that you send it via FedEx or messenger. You can also donate online here.

  • How do I find out how much food and money my drive has raised?

    The best way to find out how well your drive is doing is by viewing your personalized team page. All donations made through clicking the “donate now” button on your team page are reflected on your meter within 5 minutes. Cash and check donations marked for your team take 5-7 business days upon receipt to be processed and reflected on your online team page. Food totals are updated once each week.

  • How do I get my tax donation receipt?

    Individuals who donate online will receive an automated receipt via email. People who send monetary donations to the Food Bank of $5 or more will receive a receipt by mail.

  • How do I participate in my company's matching gift program?

    Many corporations have a matching gift program. Please consult your Human Resources department to see if your company matches charitable contributions. When making a contribution that your company will match, be sure to enclose the paperwork required by your company with your gift. For more information on Workplace Giving with the Food Bank, click here.

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