Mission & Vision


TABLE delivers healthy food and nutrition education to children in Orange County, North Carolina.


We envision a community where all children have equitable access to nutritious food and the knowledge to promote optimal health, well-being, and dignity.

It started with a cookie…

In 2006, Joy MacVane began leaving homemade cookies on the sidewalk of her downtown Chapel Hill home for UNC-CH students walking to campus. A year later, she began leaving notes by the goodies inviting students to stop by her house to bake desserts for the nearby soup kitchen. A dozen students showed up to make and deliver cakes. They discussed how much they enjoyed serving at the homeless shelter, expressed interest in local community service and identified hungry kids as a special priority. MacVane shared that concern and learned that there were no weekly food assistance services specifically for children at that time in the Chapel Hill-Carrboro area. In late 2007, she and several of those original students incorporated Table Ministries, Inc., now known as TABLE.

Since  its start in 2008, TABLE has offered “a place at the TABLE” to increasing numbers of local children. Thanks to generous donations of food, funds, and time by campus and community supporters, TABLE has quickly grown.

  • 2007/2008: Began delivering healthy food to 12 local elementary school children each week.
  • 2010/11: Incorporated fresh food into each bag and introduced nutrition education lessons.
  • 2012/13: Started delivering food to children during the summer through Summer TABLE.
  • 2014/2015: Extended programming to include kids in preschool, elementary, and middle school (3 years – 14 years)! TABLE began to serve 400 kids each week in February 2015.
  • 2017/18: Moved operations to a larger space to accommodate program expansion.
  • 2018/2019: Expanded mission to include service to Orange County, NC and high school students. TABLE delivered food to 722 kids each week and nutrition education to 358 kids each month.
  • 2019/2020: Adapted hunger relief program to deliver healthy food directly to the homes of the children TABLE serves as well as pilot alternative nutrition education programming in response to COVID-19.

Childhood hunger right here where we live, work, and go to school? Unacceptable! That’s what a group of UNC students and community people decided in 2008. Hungry to help, we named our organization TABLE to represent a place where caring hearts and hungry bellies could come together in ways that would transform us all.

Joy MacVane, TABLE Founder