AFAC provides free weekly supplemental groceries to Arlington residents in need. AFAC is committed to maintaining a safe, supportive, and respectful space for all members of our community regardless of race, religion, immigration status, age, sexual orientation, ethnicity, first language, gender, or disability.
All Are Welcome.

AFAC Policy Updates during COVID-19 (click for PDF in English or Spanish)

The Arlington Food Assistance Center (AFAC) is committed to providing free supplemental groceries to any Arlington County resident who cannot afford to purchase enough food for themselves or their families. Like any grocery store, AFAC is an “essential business” and will continue to operate during Virginia’s stay-at-home order.

Qualifications

Live in Arlington and get a referral from an Arlington County social service agency.

All AFAC clients must provide the following documents to obtain a referral: ONE photo ID and ONE proof of Arlington address. If you cannot show identification and proof of Arlington residency, you may be asked to return with those documents.

Photo ID, examples:

  • Driver’s license or ID card
  • Passport
  • APS school ID
  • Photo ID from a social service agency (example: Arlington Free Clinic or SEEC)

Proof of Address in Arlington, examples:

  • Driver’s license or ID card with current address
  • Lease or utility bill
  • Signed letter from the leaseholder
  • Mail from Arlington Public Schools, Department of Human
  • Services, or another agency
  • Bank Statement

If you already have a referral, bring your photo ID to AFAC and you will receive an AFAC barcode card. If you don’t have a referral, on your first visit to AFAC, bring your photo ID and proof of address. It is required that you show your AFAC barcode card OR photo ID to receive groceries.

Referral

To get groceries on a weekly basis, call the Department of Human Services Community Assistance Bureau (DHS CAB) at 703-228-1300. An intake worker will enroll you in the AFAC grocery program and may assess your needs for other social services. If you have a child at the Arlington Public Schools, contact your school social worker for a referral.

AFAC referrals last for 6 months. After 6 months, if you still need food assistance, you can call to renew your referral at 703-228-1300.

Individuals older than 60 or who have disabilities should call the Department of Human Services, Arlington Area Agency on Aging at 703-228-1700.

AFAC distributes groceries at two locations

Please let your social worker know which site you prefer.

AFAC Headquarters at Nelson: 2708 S. Nelson St. – *NEW HOURS*
Monday to Friday:  9:30 AM – 2:00 PM
Saturday morning: 9:00 – 11:00 AM

Clarendon United Methodist Church: 606 N. Irving St, lower level
Saturday morning: 8:30 – 10:30 AM

Home deliveries for clients who are high risk

Resources are limited for home deliveries. If you are self-isolating because you are elderly, disabled, or immunocompromised, a friend or family member can pick up your AFAC groceries and bring them to you – they must bring your AFAC barcode card or your card number. Clients may to pick up for two households in one visit.

If you do not have a local friend or family member who can help, call the DHS Arlington Area Agency on Aging at 703-228-1700 to request home deliveries or call AFAC at 571-384-1448.

Social Distancing and Face Coverings

To protect the health of AFAC’s clients, volunteers, and staff, food distribution has been moved outdoors. Individuals receiving groceries will be asked to wait on line, 6 feet apart. As is possible, please leave children at home with supervision and leave high-risk family members at home.

If you are experiencing any symptoms of COVID-19, please stay home! Symptoms may include fever, tiredness, dry cough, and shortness of breath.

AFAC staff and volunteers are equipped with face masks and gloves. Virginia’s Governor Ralph Northam asks all individuals to wear homemade cloth face coverings in public places. Please wear a face covering to AFAC – this could be a disposable mask, bandana, scarf, etc.

Client Conduct

It is expected that you show respect towards other clients and towards the volunteers who are here to serve you. Disruptive or inappropriate behavior will not be tolerated. If you are disruptive, you will not be served and may be asked to leave. Your social worker will be contacted and informed of the nature of the incident. Continued disruptive or inappropriate behavior will result in a permanent denial of service.

Weather Closures

Weather closures will be announced at afac.org.

Policy Changes

AFAC is a private non-profit organization. As such, service may be denied for the violation of any AFAC policy. AFAC reserves the right to amend these and other policies at any time.

Non-Discrimination

AFAC does not discriminate based on race, religion, ethnicity, first language, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity and expression, immigration status, age, or disability. AFAC is committed to maintaining a safe, supportive, and respectful space for all of the members of our community. All Are Welcome.

In order to get food from AFAC on a weekly basis, you must get a referral from a certified Arlington County social worker. Arlingtonians in need of immediate assistance before they can obtain a referral may be served on a one-time basis with the following documentation.

Photo ID, examples:

  • Driver’s license or ID card
  • Passport
  • APS school ID
  • Photo ID from a social service agency (example: Arlington Free Clinic or SEEC)

Proof of Address in Arlington, examples:

  • Driver’s license or ID card with current address
  • Lease or utility bill
  • Signed letter from the leaseholder
  • Mail from Arlington Public Schools, Department of Human
  • Services, or another agency
  • Bank Statement

If you cannot show identification and proof of Arlington residency, you will not be served.

To receive food on an on-going basis, you need to have an active referral. During this time period, if you need a new AFAC referral or a renewal, please call the Arlington County Department of Human Services (DHS) Community Assistance Bureau (2100 Washington Blvd, 1st floor) at 703-228-1300.

For seniors and people with disabilities, please call Aging & Disability Services Division (2100 Washington Blvd, 4th floor) at 703-228-1700. The elderly and chronically ill should call this number to inquire about home delivery.

Currently, DHS is only taking appointments over the phone for referrals. For more information about DHS services, click here.

You may pick up your food at one of the following food distribution sites (see below). When you get your referral, you will be asked to choose which location you prefer. Once you have chosen a location, you may not change it unless you notify your social worker. You can pick up your food once a week at that location only.

AFAC: 2708 South Nelson Street

Monday – Friday: 9:30 AM - 2:00 PM
Saturday Morning: 9:00-11:00 AM

Clarendon United Methodist Church: 606 North Irving Street

Saturday Morning: 9:30-10:30 AM

Our goal is to have the following items every week for our families:

  • ½ gallon of 1% milk
  • One dozen eggs
  • One Serving of Protein
    (choice of chicken, fish, or hot dogs)
  • One portion of fresh fruit
  • Two portions of fresh vegetables
  • Choice of cereal or oatmeal
  • Choice of canned goods
  • Choice of dry goods: rice, pasta, or dry beans
  • Bread
  • Baked goods

Donations & Purchases

Meats, milk and eggs are purchased from wholesalers to assure us that we are getting the best price for these fresh items. Produce donations from local gardeners, farmers markets, and gleaning organizations are supplemented by purchases from wholesalers as the budget allows. Choice items and canned goods are generally donated, but donations may be supplemented by very low cost purchases. All bread and baked goods are donated from grocery stores and local bakeries.

Food Drives & Donations

Food drives are a very important source of food donations to AFAC. They provide us with high quality food at no cost. To learn more about how to donate food or hold a food drive, please visit our food drive page.

Arlington County Department of Human Services

2100 Washington Blvd
Arlington, VA 22201

Crisis Assistance Bureau, 703-228-1300

Aging & Disability Services Division, 703-228-1700

Arlington Employment Center, 703-228-1400

Public Health, 703-228-1200

Mental Health, 703-228-5160

Homelessness Assistance

A-SPAN - Homeless Services Center, 703-228-7803
2020-A 14th St N
Arlington, VA 22201

VOA Chesapeake - Residential Program Center, 703-228-0022
1554 Columbia Pike
Arlington, VA 22204

Doorways for Women & Families, 703-504-9400

Bridges 2 Independence - Sullivan House, 703-525-7177
3103 9th Rd N
Arlington, VA 22201

Food Assistance

Our Lady Queen of Peace Food Pantry, 703-979-5580
2700 South 19th Street
Arlington, Virginia, 22204

Catholic Charities, Food Pantry at Christ House, 703-548-4227
131 South West Street
Alexandria, VA 22314

Food For Others, 703-207-9173
Office: 2938 Prosperity Avenue
Fairfax, VA 22031
*Call office or visit website to view specific food distribution sites and times.

ALIVE!, 703-837-9321
2723 King Street
Alexandria, 22303

Medical Assistance

Arlington Free Clinic703-558-0035
2921 11th St S
Arlington, VA 22201

Arlington Pediatric Center, 703-271-8800
601 S Carlin Springs Rd
Arlington, VA 22204

Neighborhood Health, 703-535-5568
2120 Washington Blvd #305
Arlington, VA 22204

Transportation Assistance

Transportation options for older adults and individuals with disabilities available at Arlington's Aging & Disability Resource Center.

The Shepherd's Center, 703-506-2199
1205 Dolley Madison Blvd, McLean, VA 22101
info@scmafc.org
Shepherd’s Center volunteers help local seniors by providing rides to medical and therapy appointments, pharmacies and grocery stores; friendly calls and visits; and helping hands at home.