Red Bag FAQs

What's the best way to fill a bag?

First, request a Food for Neighbors red bag. Then, on one of your regular grocery runs, take the bag with you and fill it with the items you want to donate.​ The shopping list is conveniently attached to your bag or you can print a shopping list here.  We recommend separating the items you are buying for Food for Neighbors from your own family's purchases to make it easier for you to value your gift for taxes (see next question).


Do I have to buy everything on the list?

No. Please fill the Red Bag with any items listed but you do not need to buy everything on the list. We sort all the collected food and make ziploc bags with a sampling of the items for the students to quickly and easily grab to take home.


What food items are most needed?

The first few things the kids always ask for are Cup 'O Noodles, Clif Bars and Chocolate Milk.


How does the bag pick up work?

We're glad you asked. Just leave your filled bag outside next to your front door by 8:30am on the Saturday dates listed on your bag tag.  Our drivers will pick up your bag, weigh it, and leave you an empty red bag to fill for the next pick up, two months later.  


If your items don't fit in one red bag, no worries!  Simply put the rest of the items in another grocery bag and we'll be happy to collect the extra bag(s), too.


If the weather is wet, rainy or snowy and your front door area is not covered, then please place your red bag of food into a white kitchen trash bag to keep everything dry and protected.


We realize you are a very busy person so we also send you handy reminder emails and text messages so you don't forget. 


How does the tax thing work?

To make things easier for yourself for taxes, have the cashier ring up the items separately (or ring them up yourself at self- checkout). This is not a requirement, but having a separate receipt of just Food For Neighbors items should makes things easier for you to value your donation. That is why we recommend placing the items you are buying for Food for Neighbors in the red bag as you are shopping. Checkout should then be a snap!


Keep the receipt in paper form or you can take a picture of it or scan it if you want to keep it digitally.


Will I receive a donation letter from Food For Neighbors?

Yes, each time we pick up a bag of food from you, we will email you a donation letter.


What do I do with the donation letter?

You can fill out the donation letter we send you and attach the grocery store receipt to it. Put this with your tax records for tax time.


What if I still have some questions?

We're friendly folks at Food for Neighbors.  We'd be happy to answer your questions or talk to you about volunteer opportunities.  Just contact us here.

DISCLAIMER:  Obviously we are not tax professionals, so nothing on this site is intended to provide tax or legal advice. You should consult with your attorney or tax professional regarding your specific tax situation and deductions.


To make a donation to the 2017 Holiday Meal Program, click HERE.

Our program is growing and we need your help.

Would you like a Red Bag?

Upcoming Events

The next bag collection will be Saturday, January 6. Please leave your filled red bag by your front door no later than 8:30am.

Making a Difference

For the November 18 collection, we received over 3,300 pounds of food from over 300 participating households.

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Food for Neighbors® is a tax-exempt, 501(c)(3) public charity.