Martha's Table

Education, Food, Opportunity

Washington, DC   |


Martha's Table believes everyone deserves both dignity and opportunity. One-third of residents in the District of Columbia struggle to make ends meet and provide for their families. Through healthy food, affordable clothing and quality education, Martha's Table works with clients and partners to build a stronger community and help break the cycle of poverty.

Ruling year info


President & CEO

Ms. Kim R. Ford

Main address

2375 Elvans Road SE

Washington, DC 20020 USA

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NTEE code info

Youth Development Programs (O50)

Emergency Assistance (Food, Clothing, Cash) (P60)

Child Day Care (P33)

IRS filing requirement

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Programs and results

What we aim to solve

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Our programs

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

What are the organization's current programs, how do they measure success, and who do the programs serve?

Early Childhood Education

Our Early Childhood Education Program provides a high quality education for children ages 6 weeks-4 years. Through our nationally recognized curriculum, we are able to make sure that our students have the tools necessary to succeed in elementary school and beyond.

Population(s) Served

Our Joyful Food Markets provide access to fresh food and pantry staples east of the Anacostia River in Washington, DC. In partnership with Capital Area Food Bank and DC Health, we set up pop-up markets in 53 elementary schools in Wards 7 & 8 each month. At these markets, students are able to shop for fresh food, and staff provide cooking demonstrations to show healthy meals that can be made with our produce.

Population(s) Served

Our oldest running program, McKenna's Wagon has served Washington, DC since 1980. McKenna's Wagon serves fresh, nutritious meals to individuals experiencing housing and food insecurity in downtown Washington, DC every evening, regardless of weather.

Population(s) Served

Because parents and caregivers are an important part of a strong community, our Family Engagement team offers programming to help them grow. Our staff runs programs to help foster growth for families, including monthly Parent Cafes that cover a variety of topics such as building trust, resiliency, communication and building strong relationships.

Population(s) Served

Where we work

Goals & Strategy

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn about the organization's key goals, strategies, capabilities, and progress.

Charting impact

Four powerful questions that require reflection about what really matters - results.

Martha's Table believes everyone deserves both dignity and opportunity. Through healthy food, affordable clothing and quality education, Martha's Table works with children and their families to build a stronger community and to help break the cycle of poverty in the District of Columbia. Our vision is for every resident to have access to the resources needed to achieve a healthy and economically-stable life.

Education: During the next year, we will continue to increase the quality of our instruction (with a laser-like focus on improving literacy skills), we will engage parents at an entirely new level as their child’s first teacher, and we will prepare for continued growth. By the end of 2016, the early childhood education program will ensure school readiness responsive to the rich cultural and language backgrounds of families and children. We will address children’s development of skills and behaviors as well as the environment in which they spend their time. Our K - 8 program will provide the tools, information, and resources to guide the youth to make successful educational transitions; ensure that students receive afterschool learning experiences that support their academic and social-emotional growth, health and well-being, as well as college and career readiness.

Food & Nutrition: Based on both the demand and the evidence we are seeing in terms of impact, we are looking to scale up our healthy eating efforts dramatically in the year ahead, with a continued focus on bringing healthy foods, including fresh produce, to low-income neighborhoods and food deserts. By 2016, a "one top shop" system will be in place and integrated to increase access to food and other services for food insecure populations. We will narrow the gap between need for food and availability, as well as improve the nutritional value of food distributed. We will integrate health and nutrition education into the food and education programs and offer such education as part of the academic, enrichment, and recreational offerings as well as at the point of food distribution.

Education: While we are proud of the accomplishments we have made in our education programs, we also recognize there are several areas still needing improvement to assure our children the greatest success. In the year ahead, we will continue to support our children’s social-emotional growth and emphasize the development of advanced language and literacy skills. In partnership with the award-winning AppleTree Institute (dedicated to closing the achievement gap before kindergarten), we are strengthening our curriculum to ensure consistency and enhance our positive impact on early learning. Professional academic coaches will observe and assesses our early education classrooms and teachers on a regular basis and provide immediate feedback for improvements.Our new Literacy Coach will train teachers on teaching literacy to all ages and will partner with parents to ensure literacy instruction is reinforced in the home. We are using the Next Step in Guided Reading to assess each student’s literacy proficiency within a grade level so that individual coaching can be implemented for each student. Through our new Parent Success Center, we are connecting parents to resources through workshops on child development, parenting, health and wellness, nutrition, and transitioning to kindergarten. Our new Infant and Toddler Parent Specialist will conduct home visits and enhance the ways in which parents support children’s early learning and development.

Food and Nutrition: In the year ahead, we will continue to directly tackle the barriers to healthy eating for low-income families in the District. We will increase vulnerable families’ access to nutritious foods – doing so in a way that promotes health, dignity, and customer choice. We will also partner more closely with our families to inform the way we address hunger while also providing a powerful platform for our parents to tell their stories in their own words.As we increase the number of meals and families served even further in 2014, we hope to add new distribution sites at two additional schools located East of the River, where poverty, hunger, and health statistics are extremely challenging. In addition, we hope to add a public food distribution focused on seniors at risk of hunger. We are also considering additional locations in the most economically-challenged areas of the city, where we will implement a healthy start strategy that integrates our two strong programs – food/nutrition and education – and focuses on a healthy start for children, their families, and our surrounding community.

Along with increasing distribution sites and meals and families served, we will also measure the way we move the needle on reducing hunger and food insecurity, and how effectively we are stimulating changes in eating habits. We will continue to gather data and improve insights about the needs of our families and our service models, doing so in collaboration with the parents and families we serve.

In April 2013, our Board of Directors appointed Patty Stonesifer as the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Martha’s Table. As the founding CEO of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Patty is committed to deepening and expanding our impact on the community using data-driven, both qualitative and quantitative, program improvements. Under her direction, we have also expanded our capacity at key positions: Director of Management and Administration, Director of Data & Performance Management, and Compliance Manager.

Education. We are accredited by the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC) and the Office of the State Superintendent of Education (OSSE), who designated Martha’s Table a Gold, Level 2 program. We are evaluating and tracking student performance with a variety of tools and monitoring the way we deliver academic support. We brought Associate degree and Bachelor’s programs onsite for our teachers. We added key staff members (Parent Success Coordinator, Infant and Toddler Parent Specialist, Assistant Director of Early Education). We launched our new Parent Success Center, which connects parents to knowledge and resources they need to achieve long-term success.

Still to accomplish: Score 5+ in all areas of ITERS, ECERS, and CLASS. In 2013, we scored 4.3 on ITERS (avg. for city). CLASS scores were 6.01 for Emotional Support; 5.28 for Classroom Organization; 2.25 for Instructional Support. All staff must meet 30 hours of Professional Development in core knowledge areas (we currently have 71% of early education staff and 82% of K-8 staff who meet this requirement). Furthermore, 90% of students should be reading at or above grade level (77% in 2013).

Food & Nutrition: We relocated our monthly grocery distribution from the alley behind our headquarters to a community center. We implemented our customer choice model across all of our healthy grocery programs, allowing each customer to fill a grocery bag with foods of their choice. We went beyond feeding hungry families to providing parents and children with healthy foods/fresh produce and the knowledge to prepare nutritious meals. We provided 180,000+ meals in the first quarter of 2014 (46% of each 23 lb. grocery bag we distributed in Q1 was fresh produce). We are gathering valuable data on our customers and their hunger challenges .We are collaborating with not only partner nonprofit organizations, but also with the parents and families we serve. In Q4 2013, we increased the number of nutritious groceries served by 64% by adding a healthy grocery market in our lobby and bringing on 4 new school markets.

Still to accomplish: We have met our goal of 20 referrals a day, but have not met our goal of 23,832 people at our school distributions (we reached 6,611 in Q1 and Q2). Though we surpassed our goal for number of meals provided at grocery distributions in Q2 2014 (132,980), we did not reach our goals for prepared meals for adults (45,820/50,000) and prepared meals for children (17,284/17,500). We also have room for improvement in client satisfaction and increasing knowledge, attitude, and practices toward healthy eating. We have exceeded our goals for the quality of our health/nutrition education program and the percentage of fresh produce distributed in groceries (42% against a 35% target).


Martha's Table

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The people, governance practices, and partners that make the organization tick.


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Martha's Table

Board of directors
as of 8/10/2021
SOURCE: Self-reported by organization
Board chair

Ellis Carr

No Affilitation

Camille Akeju

Ken Bacon

Railfield Realty Partners

Michael Bartscherer

Renata Claros

Council for Professional Recognition

Kim Ford

Martha's Table

David Gregory

Candice Hines

Cheryl McCoy

American University

Keith Mestrich

Amalgamated Bank

Joan Nathan

Chris Niemczewski

Marshfield Associates

David Pensky

Karl Racine

District of Columbia- Office of the Attorney General

David Roodberg

Horning Brothers

Laurie Wingate

Results for America

Joan Nathan

No Affiliation

Board leadership practices

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

GuideStar worked with BoardSource, the national leader in nonprofit board leadership and governance, to create this section.

  • Board orientation and education
    Does the board conduct a formal orientation for new board members and require all board members to sign a written agreement regarding their roles, responsibilities, and expectations? Yes
  • CEO oversight
    Has the board conducted a formal, written assessment of the chief executive within the past year ? Yes
  • Ethics and transparency
    Have the board and senior staff reviewed the conflict-of-interest policy and completed and signed disclosure statements in the past year? Yes
  • Board composition
    Does the board ensure an inclusive board member recruitment process that results in diversity of thought and leadership? Yes
  • Board performance
    Has the board conducted a formal, written self-assessment of its performance within the past three years? No

Organizational demographics

SOURCE: Self-reported; last updated 8/10/2021,

Who works and leads organizations that serve our diverse communities? GuideStar partnered on this section with CHANGE Philanthropy and Equity in the Center.


The organization's leader identifies as:

Race & ethnicity
Black/African American/African
Gender identity

Race & ethnicity

Gender identity


Sexual orientation

No data


No data