NIH Record - National Institutes of Health

Feds Feed Families Events Fight Hunger

Gregg Nelson
Gregg Nelson

On July 18, the NIH Community Market hosted an in-person event to promote the annual Feds Feed Families (FFF) effort. Since 2009, FFF has aimed to combat hunger within communities by encouraging federal agencies to contribute to the cause. This year, from June 26 to Sept. 30, NIH is taking an active role in the campaign, with a particular focus on mobilizing efforts within the local Washington, D.C. metropolitan area.

Gregg Nelson, co-chair of this year’s FFF, embraced his role as food program manager. With a background in the restaurant industry and a deep understanding of food operations, Nelson—now in a federal position—brought his expertise to a larger platform. 

The FFF role “gives me a good opportunity to have a nice macro view of food operations both on and off campus” that he wouldn’t otherwise have, he said.

FFF is once again virtual this year due to the ongoing pandemic. Participants are encouraged to donate in multiple ways, from purchasing groceries online and having them delivered directly to a food bank or pantry of their choice, to making monetary donations. This virtual setup enables greater accessibility and participation across the NIH community.

Tables and tents with edibles and other goodies line a pathway on the south lawn behind the Clinical Center.
The community market helped NIH’s Feds Feed Families campaign showcase this year’s effort. Other special campus events benefiting FFF include a lift-a-thon (see Seen).

Photo:  Eric Bock

In addition to online donations, NIH again offered a creative twist—collection points at the campus cafeterias. Throughout the month of August, employees could add a specific amount to their cafeteria bills, making the act of giving seamless and convenient.

The campaign shines a spotlight on partnering organizations such as the Children’s Inn at NIH and the Safra Family Lodge, the Capital Area Food Bank and Manna Food Center. These local entities receive donations, ensuring that the impact of the campaign directly supports communities in need.

Nelson’s optimism and dedication are shared by co-coordinator Renee Barnes, who has been a part of FFF for two years. She emphasizes the importance of community involvement in generating innovative initiatives. As different institutes and centers organize their own events and projects, the FFF campaign takes on a broader role.

By leveraging technology, fostering community partnerships and empowering employees to make a difference, FFF not only raises crucial food donations but also strengthens the bonds of unity and compassion within the NIH family. 

Visit for more information on giving.  

The NIH Record

The NIH Record, founded in 1949, is the biweekly newsletter for employees of the National Institutes of Health.

Published 25 times each year, it comes out on payday Fridays.

Assistant Editor: Eric Bock (link sends e-mail)

Staff Writer: Amber Snyder (link sends e-mail)