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The Open Door - Food Shelf

Raise money for The Open Door - Food Shelf

What we do:

The Open Door’s mission is “a fresh approach to ending local hunger through access to health food”.

The Open Door is celebrating its 10th Anniversary this year as a nonprofit organization supporting low-income residents through access to fresh and healthy food. Each month, our collective programs serve more than 6,000 people and distribute over 1 million pounds of food annually, nearly 70% of which is fresh and/or perishable. Clients may access nutritious food options through a fixed-site food pantry in Eagan, 28 Mobile Pantry sites, the Mobile Lunchbox, and the Garden to Table program. Through our healthy food focus and innovative programs, we have sought to redefine how our sector approaches hunger relief. We view hunger through a community-health lens, and work to help our clients improve access to nutritious food in an equitable manner.


$100.00 provides 2 weeks of groceries for three families. 

$50.00 provides milk for 50 Families.

$30.00 provides eggs for 30 Families.

The Open Door’s Innovative Programs:

The Eagan Pantry is a bricks-and-mortar site that provides milk, eggs, dairy, meat, chicken, fish, fruits and vegetables. Five days and two evenings a week, volunteers help clients make monthly appointments by phone and in person, meet with new food-shelf users, ensure that they know how to connect with other community food options and any needed social services, and help clients navigate the pantry and select food items based on the size and needs of each family. No food is pre-bagged for the client, and nearly 70 percent of the options are fresh and perishable.  

The Mobile Pantry offers food support to those who lack reliable transportation. Buses stocked at TOD’s food-distribution center make scheduled stops at churches and low-income apartment complexes, where clients enter the bus to select their own food. As of 2018, a new box truck carries food to elementary schools and senior-living facilities, where volunteers carry it into community rooms so that clients can “shop” comfortably indoors. Similar facilities are on a waiting list with The Open Door.

Pop Up Produce stands offer boxes and bags of fruits and vegetables to the public at parks near low-income housing communities. TOD has partnered with schools to publicize the produce stands to families, including English language learners. Parents and teachers may bring games and books to the park, creating a festive atmosphere and a sense of community around the two-hour period when the produce stand is present. 

Mobile Lunch Box addresses children's hunger in the summertime, when they lose access to free and reduced-price meals at school. The Open Door distributes healthy brown-bagged lunches at low-income housing complexes, where children are encouraged to eat outdoors together and play games provided by volunteers. This summer, Mobile Lunch Box provided more than 2,700 meals directly to kids at five sites in low-income neighborhoods who otherwise would have gone without. 

Garden to Table helps food-shelf clients plant, grow, harvest and prepare their own fresh produce. Churches, schools and businesses provide 200 adoptable plots at eight local sites. Clients receive seeds, plants, tools and access to free classes on gardening and food preparation. In summer 2019, a ninth garden site has been added at an Eagan mobile-home community, and a part-time summer intern is providing Spanish-language interpretation and outreach to immigrant client-gardeners.

Hunger in Dakota County:

  • 31,200 people in Dakota County are food insecure. 
  • 1/3rd of Dakota County residents have low access to food. 
  • Urban areas: > 1 mile from grocery store
  • Suburban areas: > 10 miles from grocery store
  • 1 out of 3 children eligible for free or reduced lunch nationwide now live in the suburbs.
  • Minimum wage = needing to work 75 hours/week to afford a two bedroom apartment in Dakota County.
  • For the first time in history there are more people in poverty in the suburbs than in the urban core. 
  • Senior visits to food shelves in Dakota County are up 57% over the last 7 years. 


$100.00 provides 2 weeks of groceries for three families. 

$50.00 provides milk for 50 Families.

$30.00 provides eggs for 30 Families. 


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Recent donors

Recent donors
Date Name Amount
Nov 12 Anonymous Undisclosed amount
Nov 11 Dana Norgren Undisclosed amount
Nov 11 Candice Meyer $104.00
Nov 10 Patrick Swain $26.00
Nov 10 Angie Andersen $52.00
Nov 10 Anonymous Undisclosed amount
Nov 10 Anonymous Undisclosed amount
Nov 09 Anonymous Undisclosed amount
Nov 09 Lynn Hodnett $5.20
Nov 09 Cory Smith $26.00