Thursday, January 16, 2014

A Special Thank You to Our New Building Remodel Crew!

Photo Credit:  Nichole Connor
While our focus at NK Fishline is to provide food and emergency services to the community, we have spent a little over a month now on a very important project: our new building remodel. The new-to-us space will help to provide a much needed expansion from our current location, and allow us to work more efficiently, serve the community better and give more to those in need. 

Photo Credit:  Nichole Connor
Our call to the community has been for services and materials. Donated or discounted time and supplies enable Fishline to stay within a budget, and more importantly: gives members of the community a sense of ownership in the ongoing and completed project.


Photo Credit:  Nichole Connor
 A project of this magnitude could not be completed without a committed group of individuals. Finding time in your already busy schedules to give to such a worthy project deserves praise beyond words. While contributions are ongoing, we would like to thank the following businesses and people for their efforts so far:

Tim Ryan Construction
Rick Lander, oversees volunteers and materials
Swift Plumbing
Chad Lyons, Lyons Painting
Miles Yanick & Company, Architect

Sandy Wenberg, Color Specialist
Peninsula Paint, donated all the paint
The Hansen family and Jan and Neal Henson, all the scotch broom extraction
Bainbridge Island Disposal, donated use of a dumpster
Central Market, provided pizzas for work parties

Anne Alexander, donated grab bars for the bathroom
David Graves, Information Technology Implementation
Town and Country Market for the walk-in coolers
Jack Archer
Mark Wright
Glen Hanson
Matthew Brooke
Mike Regis
Les Fritch
Joanne Reno

Friday, January 10, 2014

New Year Brings New Hope as Fishline Moves Forward with New Building Project

These are tearful times at Fishline. Not so much because we're sad - no, these are a different type of tears. They are the kind that Edgar Allen Poe most certainly had been thinking about when he wrote, "Beauty of whatever kind, in its supreme development, invariably excites the sensitive soul to tears.”

These are tears of joy that come by being a part of beauty, of kindness, of compassion beyond words. What invokes this kind of response is often spontaneous, freeing and even surprising. But it is a reaction that can be uplifting. We seem hardwired to want to feel these feelings, to witness some sort of proof of goodness and generosity in a world so often filled with bad news and reasons to worry.

Watching the progress we are making on readying our new food bank, the efforts and contributions of volunteers and contractors coming together to turn an abandoned RV dealership into a warm, respectful promise of better times for struggling neighbors, has had an impact upon us all. Staff, volunteers and other community members are feeling renewed and inspired by the way it is all coming together.

During a recent open house, when we invited clients to see our new facility, many were obviously experiencing awe and relief. Knowing that we were willing to take on this project to make things easier and more dignified for them brought authentic tears of gladness and gratitude.

One senior said, through his tears, "I've lived all my life taking care of myself and my family. There was a time when we were well off. But now, I'm 86 years old, my income is barely enough, and I couldn't afford food without Fishline. I am so thankful." Another woman, who is a home health care aid and shops for herself and her patient, said "I have always known that Fishline cares about me, about all of us. But this is such a better situation for us, we can park and shop whenever we need to, it is just beautiful."

When almost overwhelmed with generosity, the human instinct is to want to do something, find some way, to return the favor. One of the clients viewing our new space during the open house looked around and said, almost as a whisper to be overheard, "You're going to need painters. I'm a painter. Let me help." This client will join other members of our community offering their support, working side-by-side to help write the next chapter in Fishline's history.

We are humbled by the way so many have come forward to offer their labor, their donations and their support. But we are reminded by these donors that they receive a great gift by helping, a feeling of satisfaction like no other. When a donor recently came in with a year-end check, she toured the food bank and, by the end of the tour, her face was streaming with tears. To know that Fishline's services are offered with such respect for our client experience deeply affected her. It made her feel proud to have contributed to it - rightly so, because Fishline only offers what donors and supporters make possible.

We live in a world that can be confusing. In our hearts, we know there must be a way to assure a safe community where everyone has enough. We are frustrated when we hear that this is not always the case. But moments come in the darkest times, almost as if to remind us that along with that darkness is great potential for love, for hope and for the kind of tears that wash away fear. These are the pillars that hold up the house of Fishline, helping make our community a beauty of supreme development.

Monday, January 6, 2014

2014 NK Fishline Client Re-Registration

Starting Wednesday, Jan. 8nd, NK Fishline will begin its annual client re-registration.  Each year, clients must verify their information such as address, contact info, family members and income.  This is to help ensure that the information we have for our clients is accurate. 

Clients, please note these re-registration requirements and allow a few extra minutes for the process.

Full-Service Clients:
Two forms of identification needed

Picture ID (Driver’s License, Military ID, Tribal Card)
Proof of local residency or employment
E.g., recent utility bill, DSHS paperwork, pay stub
Lease and mortgage paperwork are NOT valid proofs of residency
Note: If you are unable to provide proof of local residency or employment, you will be considered an “Out of Area” client until proof is provided to Fishline.
Out of Area Clients:
One form of identification needed

Picture ID (Driver’s License, Military ID, Tribal Card)
Thank you for your cooperation and patience! 

Thursday, January 2, 2014

Everyday Heroes

Over the Thanksgiving holiday, our Executive Director, had issues with her furnace.  She called on Poulsbo Heating and Cooling and the repairman instantly recognized her from Fishline.  He lamented that, after helping so many others have a warm home, it just didn't seem right for her to have a cold one.  In an act of spontaneous generosity, he repaired the furnace without cost.  

For 12 weeks through the holiday season, ROTARY CAN DO collected different types of food during their regular Friday morning meetings.  Every week, they added an inch of string, representing a pound of food collected.  The campaign started with a few feet of string, and by the end wrapped around the entire meeting space.  At the end, Rotary brought in over 1330+ lbs of food, 127lbs of ham and turkey AND $1020+ of monetary donations! 

One Saturday morning, a gentleman named Gary came to the back door of Fishline and asked if we could use a few brand new electric blankets, with the price tags still on them! He dropped off 20 of them and said he would return on Monday with more.  He asked specifically that they go to our elderly clients to help save on their heating bills! 

The local Kiwanis club typically donates $5 each to bring their district governor to the meetings, a sort of mileage reimbursement.  Since this person lives locally, he asked that the Kiwanians donate the collection to Fishline and we received a check for $110.

The Historic Downtown Poulsbo Association hosted visits from Thanksgiving to Christmas with Santa and collected money and food donations.  After Christmas they donated $960 plus food to Fishline. 

On a Wednesday evening, when Fishline was open late, here seemed to be an extraordinary number of food donations from individual citizens.  People were stopping in all evening, bringing cans and boxed meals and other fun stuff.  But to cap it off, one couple came in and found each and every volunteer who was working and gave them $10 each.  No questions, no names, just holiday generosity.

Our local fire department showed up at Fishline's door before Christmas with over 443lbs of food donations that they had collected during their holiday food drive. 

Early Christmas Eve, someone was POUNDING on Second Season's door after closing.  The volunteers working were hesitant to open it.  When they did, they found several junior high age girls and their mothers.  They had been playing music out on the main street with a sign that all donations would go to Fish Line and they had a WAD of cash -- over $40!  Great kids and just so happy!  They had a fun time playing and people kept giving!  Then they were so sad that we were closed, but caught the volunteers at the back door.  Such a fun thing on Christmas Eve!

In the last few weeks, volunteers and construction professionals have stepped forward to work on the new building project. The work has happened quickly --  a family has stepped forward to clear out the brush behind the building, other groups have come in to do clean up work, a painter has volunteered his time to paint the walls. 

These examples (and many more!!) week after week through the holiday season left us in awe of the many different ways people found to give.  These special acts of kindness from private citizens, organizations, and businesses mean so much, especially to make sure that those in need have enough during Thanksgiving and Christmas.  We so appreciate these holiday Hunger Heroes!

As we begin the new year, we hope you will join us to fill our Hunger Heroes food drive and event calendar.  This important program is designed to highlight the everyday heroes that contribute to Fishline beyond the holiday season.  Contact us at to include your event!