Frequently Asked Questions


Who can receive food from Manna Food Center?

We provide food to Montgomery County residents in need who earn less than the 2008 Montgomery County Self-Sufficiency Standard. Clients must earn less than $70,000 for a family of four or $33,000 for a single person.

How can I receive food?

If you need food, you're not alone. Manna Food Center has given food to more than 2.5 million people since 1983. You will need to get a referral every time you pick up food from Manna. You can get a referral by contacting our main office during business hours at 301-424-1130. You must speak with a Manna referral representative who will ask you some simple questions to verify that you qualify for services and are eligible to receive food.

If you need a referral outside of our normal business hours, you may contact the Department of Health and Human Services, a nonprofit organization, a faith based organization, your children's school, an employee assistance program at work, or your doctor. If you don't have anyone to give you a referral, you can call the Montgomery County Information and Referral line at 240-777-0311. Visit our How to Receive Food page for more information about receiving food.

How much food will I receive?

You will receive about 70 pounds of food, typically a 3-5 day supply of food. You will receive a box of shelf-stable food staples to stock your pantry. You will also receive a box of food items containing food we collect that day from grocery stores and other sources, This box may include produce, bread, meat, sandwiches, some sweet treats, and dairy products.

How often can I get food?

You can get food once every 30 days. You will need a referral every time you pick up food.

Where do I go to pick up food?

Once you have a referral, you can pick up food at Manna's main warehouse or at one of Manna's satellite sites. You will need to specify where you want to pick up food when you talk with your referral source. You can get food once every 30 days.

How can I help Manna?

Manna relies on the generosity of our community to help us fight hunger and feed hope in Montgomery County. You can help by donating food or funds, by volunteering, or by becoming a partner organization.

What kinds of food does Manna need most?

Manna always needs shelf-stable food items like cereal, pasta, rice, beans, peanut butter, fruits and vegetables, soup, and canned meat and tuna so that we can give our hungry neighbors a wide variety of healthy, nutritious food. You can review our Wish List of Food Items for a complete list.

Where does Manna's funding come from?

Much of our funding comes from individuals. Manna also receives generous financial support from state and local governments, corporations, foundations, faith-based organizations, and community groups.

How is my donation used?

94 cents of every $1 donated goes towards food distribution. The rest is used to cover our expenses at Manna, including utility costs, truck maintenance, gasoline, storage, and salaries for Manna's small staff.

What is food insecurity?

'Food insecurity' is the federal government's synonym for hunger. People are considered food insecure if they run out of food and do not have the resources to purchase more or if they have to reduce the quality or quantity of food that they are able to purchase.