Downtown Streets Team to run Food Closet | August 22, 2014 | Palo Alto Weekly | Palo Alto Online |

Palo Alto Weekly

News - August 22, 2014

Downtown Streets Team to run Food Closet

New leadership hopes to bring funding to program

by Sue Dremann

After two disappointing years of subsidizing the Palo Alto Food Closet and other homeless services out of its other programs, the nonprofit InnVision Shelter Network will turn operations of the longtime downtown grocery program over to Eileen Richardson, executive director of the nonprofit Downtown Streets Team.

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Staff Writer Sue Dremann can be emailed at


Posted by Jeff Rensch, a resident of Barron Park
on Aug 22, 2014 at 11:09 am

I am very happy that this useful program is continuing. It is an essential program.

Posted by Christine Gandel, a resident of Downtown North
on Aug 22, 2014 at 3:01 pm

It's wonderful that the Food Closet will continue to serve the many people who have come to depend on it.

Posted by, a resident of Duveneck/St. Francis
on Aug 22, 2014 at 3:33 pm

Congratulations to Eileen. We have served at several Thanksgiving gatherings that she has coordinated at All Saints, and her spirit and compassion are always an important part of the events.

Posted by happytohelp, a resident of Fairmeadow
on Aug 22, 2014 at 7:28 pm

Is there a web site like Second Harvest where I can donate and have it billed monthly to my credit card?

Posted by Needs help, a resident of Downtown North
on Aug 23, 2014 at 8:00 am

I think the idea is great but if the food closet is run by the street team, they need lots more guidance to succeed. I see the street team a lot in action and I have to say the majority of them walk together and talk and do little cleaning.

Posted by PA Resident, a resident of Downtown North
on Aug 23, 2014 at 8:19 am

I too see the Streets Team all the time downtown for many years now. When I see them they are working hard! Their team spirit and sense of belonging to the community again is incredible to see. Makes me proud to live in Palo Alto where people do get a second chance to prove themselves.

Posted by midtown, a resident of Charleston Gardens
on Aug 23, 2014 at 10:40 am

The Food Closet in in good hands. I worked with Eileen years ago. She is a capable, entrepreneurial businesswoman with a generous spirit and compassionate soul. I wish other successful Palo Alto leaders would take a cue from her actions instead of the greedy business as usual articles I read about others. These programs should be more prevalent in this community of riches and expensive restaurants.

Posted by Marie, a resident of Midtown
on Aug 23, 2014 at 12:27 pm

Marie is a registered user.

Some programs really work better and generate support with local control. I am glad the highly successful Urban Pantry will continue.

I have donated money to Innvision and plan to continue, but have not designated a particular program. I wonder if Palo Alto programs got any credit for my donations? I would like to know how Innvision defines "support from Palo Alto" from private donations. In the future, I will be sure to designate my donations for Palo Alto programs, although normally I don't like to put that kind of restrictions.

Also, I would like to know how many of the people served by the programs in Palo Alto are actually Palo Alto residents? I doubt Palo Alto residency or even Santa Clara County residence is required to participate in the programs Innvision supports in Palo Alto, nor should they be. I think that for Innvision to expect to get all their support for programs in Palo Alto from Palo Alto and its residents, is not a reasonable objective.

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