Libby Urie Food Pantry

The Libby Urie Food Pantry provides food assistance to all who are in need, regardless of race, income, gender, age or religion. On an annual basis, we distribute close to 10,000 lbs. of food to local community members who struggle to put food on their tables. We are the only food pantry that stocks Kosher items in our pantry, and we also have non-kosher food items and a selection of personal care items. Most of the products are donated by our local religious schools, families celebrating simchas and community food drives. JFS works closely with chef Lee Casher of Lee’s Good Eats, and her project “Save the Bananas,” to provide supplemental food to families throughout the community.

Ways to Help

You can support the Libby Urie Food Pantry by dropping off non-perishable kosher and non-kosher food, toiletries and cleaning supplies at the JFS office during normal business hours. Please do not leave food outside of our building. You can also give a gift from your heart so that we can keep the food pantry supplied. You can also donate gift cards to Giant Foods to help supplement our Pantry for perishable food items such as bread, meat, poultry, eggs, cheese and milk.


It doesn’t take a big commitment to make a big impact. Any help you can provide to stock our food pantry and deliver meals would be a great service to individuals and families in need. Please fill out a volunteer form here (LINK TO VOLUNTEER FORM) or call us at 717-233-1681 to ask about volunteering at the pantry.

“My father told me that when growing up in Lithuania he had to
eat out of garbage cans because there was
never enough food." - Libby Urie

Libby also said that she’s happy to help people in need & to make a difference in people’s lives.

Libby Urie is what you can call an equal opportunity philanthropist. Her generosity supports diverse populations and organizations throughout our community. Her philanthropic interests go from educating kids to helping people with financial hardship; from instilling important Jewish values to enabling people of all faiths to find comfort from debilitating illness. Additionally, Libby has made a strong commitment to the Harrisburg Jewish community by establishing funds that support Jewish Family Service, Silver Academy and Chisuk Emuna. Libby’s passion for addressing the needs of those with limited financial resources in the Jewish community was realized when she established the Libby Urie Financial Assistance Fund at JFS. The fund, which is now housed at and managed by The Foundation for Enhancing Communities (TFEC), offers essential resources and a helping hand to people struggling with short-term financial crises. Libby, through her support of the Financial Assistance Fund, exemplifies the strong value that our Jewish tradition places on giving generously and selflessly. Libby’s donation serves as a model for others who are interested in investing in the future of our Jewish community. We, at JFS, are proud to salute Libby Urie as a true hero of philanthropy. Please consider following in Libby’s footsteps by creating a fund in support of JFS. The community-wide Legacy Initiative is an excellent vehicle for lending this kind of support. Bequests and planned gifts designated for JFS services can be housed at the Jewish Foundation of Central PA, The Foundation for Enhancing Communities (TFEC), or another foundation or financial institution of the donor’s choice. 

Why the Food Pantry Matters

Based on the available research*, we know that between 16 and 20 percent of Jewish households earn less than $30,000 with seven (7) percent earning less than $15,000. Between one (1) and eight (8) percent of Jewish households say that they “can’t make ends meet.” However, there is a second layer of households—above 20 percent in many Jewish communities—that are “just managing” or “just getting along,” illustrating a much larger base of households that require assistance. Based on research by the Central PA Food Bank, 1 in 6 children in Central PA is hungry and 140,000 of our neighbors struggle with hunger each month.

Your support of JFS and the Libby Urie Food Pantry can make a real difference in the lives of so many families in our community.

*Prepared by Jonathan Hornstein for The Harry and Jeanette Weinberg Foundation, February 2019.

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