Lynn Stacy and volunteers with the Arcata Food Project with the project’s distinct mural covered van. Lynn Stacy (front row, second from right) with her colleagues from the Arcata Food Project. (Philip Santos– The Times-Standard)

In this series, we spotlight Open Door Staff who are involved in our community. First up: Lynn Stacy, from Eureka Community Health Centers.

“I’ve been working with the Arcata Food Project for over a decade. The project started as a group of people who were concerned that our neighbors with HIV weren’t getting enough nutritious food. But now we’ve expanded from focusing on the HIV/AIDS population to include others in need. We pick up unsold produce from farmers’ markets and grocery stores and deliver it to those in need. In the summer we handle a lot of produce, sometimes hundreds of pounds in one day. The organization wouldn’t exist without the farmers who donate thousands of dollars of produce every year.”

“When you’re sick and you’re eating fresh and organic food, you’re more likely to be functional. That’s why I do it—to help others in our community feel better, to give their immune systems a boost. But what I also love about the Arcata Food Project is that—while it’s entirely volunteer-based and only asks people to show up when they can—it continues to find the help it needs week after week. It reaffirms my faith in young people that they’re willing to give up their Saturdays to come and help.”