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Pajaro Valley Loaves and Fishes

      "The best way to find yourself
                              is to lose yourself in the service of others."

                                                                  - Mahatma Ghandi


Youth volunteer Karina serves Christmas lunch to a mother and her children.
What's Inside
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Upcoming Events & Opportunities

Wish List

  • Professional Chefs to help enhance our lunch service
  • Security Lighting
  • Fence Repairs and Miscellaneous Handy-Man Work
  • Yoga Teachers to lead classes for PVLF staff and volunteers

From the President

Dear Dedicated Loaves & Fishes Supporters,
It’s been a record-breaking, unforgettable year at Pajaro Valley Loaves and Fishes. In our 26th year of operation, we have served the highest number of people in our hot lunch and pantry programs to date. Our staff and volunteers in downtown Watsonville have been busier than ever before and their work has gained rapidly increasing attention,as evidenced by our most successful fundraising efforts to date.

I appreciate this opportunity to share with you why I’m involved with Loaves and Fishes. It’s a frontline, boot-strapping and humble organization that touches thousands of lives each year with a limited budget and efficient operations carried out by a cadre of volunteers and a small but nimble full-time staff of three people.

At the heart of it, Loaves and Fishes provides for the most basic human need: Sustenance. Our agency is the only emergency food provider in South Santa Cruz County open every weekday. Setting aside the larger, more complicated challenges of serving the homeless, unemployed and those suffering from untreated mental illness, we address the jointly existing hunger and food insecurity, and commit ourselves to continue to do so.

We cheerfully welcome those who need food assistance and bilingual nutrition education in our community without regard to their residency, income, employment or documentation status. We prepare an average of 200 nutritious hot lunches each day and in 2014 experienced more than 9,500 pantry visits by 2,100 households.

I’m proud of the hope Loaves and Fishes represents in the community. If you are looking for a good organization to support with a year-end gift, I can’t think of a better place to invest. Please contact us at or 831-319-4570.

Thank You,

J.M. Brown
President, Board of Directors


Holiday Volunteer Opportunities!

Updates and Opportunities

Monday & Tuesday November 23rd and 24th 1pm-5pm - Thanksgiving Poultry Distributions.
We need 5 volunteers each day to help us distribute Thanksgiving nourishment to over 400 families.

Monday November 30st – Friday December 11th Christmas Poultry and Toys for Tots Sign Ups.
We need 2-3 Bi-lingual volunteers every afternoon from 1-4pm to help sign up families in Pantry.
Thursday December 17th 5:45pm Pick Up first load of toys from Toys for Tots warehouse.
We need 3-4 volunteers to help us pick up our first load of toys.


Monday, December 21st  5:00pmSecond Round of Toy Pick Ups.
Tuesday, December 22ndToy Distributions (BIG NEED!)
Need about 10-15 volunteers to help us set up the "North Pole" at Loaves and Fishes. Registered families will join us to "shop" for their children's toys for the holidays. We need some elves to help organize, replenish toys, and supervise tables.
Wednesday, December 23rdToy Distributions Day 2.
We will be open to serve our festive lunch of hand-made tamales and pozole!
  • Decorate Tables
  • Hold a Turkey Drive for frozen turkeys to distribute to our families
  • Hold a Toy Drive among your networks
  • Hold a food drive, collecting high-quality protein foods (peanut butter, canned tuna, canned soup, bags of beans and rice).
  • Volunteer to Carol during one of our holiday lunches.

Whole Foods Holiday Campaign

Whole Foods Market in Capitola has selected Pajaro Valley Loaves and Fishes as their recipient for their Feed a Local Family Campaign! Running from November 4th to December 29th, the Campaign will encourage Whole Foods customers to donate at the registers to help fill the cupboards of local families in need this holiday season. Funds will go directly to Loaves and Fishes work to nourish change in the Pajaro Valley!
Thank You Whole Foods!


New Lunch Hours

Help us spread the word!

On January 1st, 2016, Loaves and Fishes will change our lunch service hours from 12-2pm to 12-1pm. This change is to allow for more time for clean-up and meal prep in our kitchen, so as to continue to serve the highest quality meals in our lunch program.

Even while our lunch numbers continue to grow, with more new faces joining us every day, over 90% of our participants are served within the first 30 minutes of our lunch service. For this reason, we do not anticipate this change in hours to severely affect the accessibility of our services.

We appreciate your support and suggestions on how to best serve our community. If you have any questions or comments, please contact Kristal at 831-319-4570
or email

Copyright © 2015 Pajaro Valley Loaves and Fishes, All rights reserved.

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