Fishline’s new $3.9 million facility along Viking Avenue NW, across from Olmstead’s Nursery, is shaping up to be quite an addition to the community. Once completed, the new spot will be a boon to those in need of food and other social services in the north end of the county.
Mary Nader, Fishline’s executive director, said even the landscape design takes into account Fishline’s mission as a food bank.
“Most of the landscaping here has been designed to produce fruit,” Nader said, pointing to the trees and small shrubs in the location’s parking lot. Blueberries, lavender, rosemary, strawberries, rhubarb and currants all line the parking lot, she explained. “It’s just a sweet little reminder of the work that we do, and it’s made it beautiful.”
The first floor of the new facility is 7,500 square feet, with the building itself taking up a whopping 15,000 square feet divided between its two floors. That’s three times the size of Fishline’s previous location.
“That allows us to be able to expand our warehouse, our food processing center, our rescue facility and the cold storage that we really need to be able to hold onto food and make it last,” Nader said. “You would be surprised at how much we have to throw away on Friday afternoons because we don’t have the cold storage to keep it over the weekend. … We figure about a quarter-million dollars of food is tossed [annually] that could be served if we had a place to wheel it in and keep it until Monday.”
It won’t just be food that the new Fishline location will be providing, though. Nader says partnerships with numerous providers mean that those in need can come to the facility as a sort of one-stop-shopping for food and other social services. Once opened, those who visit the center can be put in touch with providers from:
— Kitsap Community Resources
— Housing Solutions Center
— YWCA Domestic Violence Support
— American Legion
— Kitsap Sexual Assault Center
— Kitsap Crime Victim Assistance Center
— Dispute Resolution Center
— Washington State Department of Social and Human Services
— Sound Works Job Center
— Kitsap Mental Health Center
A dental office will also be onsite, staffed by providers through Peninsula Community Health Services.
The volunteers with Fishline will also see plenty of benefit from the new location with the addition of offices, conference rooms, consultation rooms, new furniture donated by Watson Furniture and a break room that Nader said has moved joyful volunteers to tears.
“We’ve got such an amazing group of staff members, volunteers, community members that care about what’s happening here,” Nader said. “We know our community has our back. They’re with us, and that’s a cool thing for the future.”
Public tours of the new facility are slated for every Monday, at 3 p.m. until the grand opening on November 10.