COLUMBUS, Ohio (WCMH) — The Mid-Ohio Food Collective celebrated the grand opening Monday of its new market on Columbus’ east side.

The Mid-Ohio Market at the Bishop Griffin Resource Center on East Livingston Avenue will serve as a key asset for families in that neighborhood and beyond.

“At one point in time, the Bishop Griffin center was only servicing two zip codes,” lifelong resident Connie Claprood said. “It’s now servicing city-wide with the focus being the codes on the east side.”

The market offers a holistic approach to serving the community, wanting everyone who comes through those doors to know they’ll get the help they need.

“Walking through this building, oh my gosh, the freezers now, the space now, the clothing space, it’s just going to be absolutely tremendous for the community,” Claprood said.

It’s the sixth Mid-Ohio food market, but the first of its kind on the east side.

“The whole Mid-Ohio Market strategy is which part of the Mid-Ohio Food Collective is really around wrap-around services, you know? Treating the whole person,” Mid-Ohio Food Collective CEO Matt Habash said. “The idea is come get the food, but also if you need help speaking English, if you need clothing, if you need help with healthcare, they do all kinds of screenings. That’s the kind of things we want to have readily available.”

Because the need is there. 

“We are seeing almost 40% more people than we did a year ago across our whole 20-county footprint; the majority of that is Franklin County,” Habash said. “That’s higher than it was at the peak of COVID.”

And for residents like Claprood, they know it will serve a purpose.

“I’ve lived in this neighborhood all my life, so it is really important to be able to give back to the people and not necessarily the neighbor across the street or down the street, but there are people in this community that have extreme need and so it’s important to give back,” Claprood says.

The new Mid-Ohio market will officially open on Wednesday. It will be open Wednesdays and Fridays but will extend its hours as needed.