Ride United: Last Mile Delivery

Deliveryperson handing off a box filled with groceries

What is Ride United: Last Mile Delivery?

United Way’s Ride United: Last Mile Delivery initiative, in partnership with DoorDash, delivers essential items such as food and other essential items to the doorsteps of area families in need.

We partner with local food pantries and nonprofits to deliver necessities at no cost to neighbors who are not able to access items on their own - including new mothers, people with disabilities, and homebound seniors.

Ensuring all neighbors have access to necessities

Ride United Last Mile Delivery was designed to fill the critical "last-mile" gap in accessing nutritious food and essential resources for clients who lack transportation. In partnership with DoorDash, Dashers make deliveries directly to households, meeting the needs of all family members. Dashers are compensated for their work.

This program launched in Champaign County in August 2022. We have made over 3,000 deliveries! It is made possible thanks to DoorDash and a grant from United Way Worldwide. 

Our Partners

  • Community Service Center Emergency Food Pantry
  • CU Early Childhood 
  • Cunningham Township
  • Developmental Services Center
  • Pregnancy Resource Center
  • PACE
  • Stone Creek Church Food Pantry- (Temporarily Closed)
  • The Hope Center
  • Trauma & Resilience Initiative, Inc.
  • Wesley Food Pantry (Parkland and Green Street location) 

We are looking to expand our partnerships. If you are interested in becoming a partner, please contact Javaite Burton.

Partnership Success: Stone Creek Food Pantry

Stone Creek Food Pantry

"As a Food Pantry, our goal is to get food out to as many families in our community as possible.  Although we've been in existence for 16 years, during the pandemic we saw unprecedented numbers of families that needed to get food but could not get out to get it for various reasons.  I simply could not keep up with the number of families that would contact us and need food delivered.  I tried to recruit drivers and invariably, someone would become sick themselves or couldn't come in to help. I said 'no' to a lot of families that contacted me and it was incredibly sad to me. I contacted the United Way for help. They had just become partners with DoorDash in a brand new program called Ride United.  

When our Pantry was chosen to be the first Pantry in our County to partner with Ride United, I was thrilled!  We went from delivering to 10 and sometimes 20 families to 70 within a matter of weeks. Delivery is now available to such a degree that the people that need help are actually receiving it. THAT feels amazing. Throughout the week, on the days that our Pantry is not open, when I receive a message from a family that needs food and cannot get to our location, I can now say an emphatic, "YES!"  Yes! We can get food to you. Yes! We now have partners who are helping us.

An unexpected bonus of this whole program is the Dashers themselves.  We've met some absolutely wonderful people!  When the Dashers became aware that we are a Food Pantry and realized that they are getting food to families that could not pay for it, they were really excited!  Each of them has been so happy to be a part of it and have that as part of their day. I've had great conversations with so many of them and it has been a real pleasure getting to meet them!"

-Angela Bradley, Stone Creek Food Pantry

Making a difference for Lorenza

Woman holding infant

Lorenza had a baby in September. While having enough food has been an ongoing struggle, accessing food with a newborn and toddler has been virtually impossible for her as she has no access to a car. Lorenza and her kids receive food deliveries thanks to Ride United Last Mile Delivery. They have been extremely grateful for the help.

Showing up for Maria and her family

Maria and children playing

Maria needed to take her son to Chicago this fall for surgery, which led to her missing work. As a result, she found she did not have money to buy enough food. Maria is a single mom of three, and unexpected expenses often leave her without enough money to cover the regular costs of rent, bills, and food. She is afraid of losing housing for her family, so food is the first thing she cuts back on if money is running short. Deliveries from Ride United's food pantry partners help her ensure her family has enough food to eat.