The COVID-19 pandemic has altered life for people all over the world, in particular people who deal with hunger on a daily basis.
In the 22 counties served by the Food Bank of Eastern Michigan, the need for food as the holiday season approaches is nearly 40 percent greater than last year at this time. Since mid-March, through our network of partner agencies, food pantries, churches, schools, and other organizations, the Food Bank has distributed more than 33 million pounds of food – that’s more than double the amount distributed last year over the same time period and more than we distributed in total for all of 2019.
“As winter weather sets in, so do increased financial burdens on families,” said Kara Ross, President and CEO of the Food Bank of Eastern Michigan. “Higher utility bills for heat, healthcare costs associated with cold and flu season, the costs associated with holiday season — these are all ways that families on already tight budgets are impacted during the fall and winter during a typical year. Now, with a global pandemic and high unemployment, those numbers of people in need of food assistance are only going to continue to increase.”
To meet this need, the Food Bank is trying to raise $800,000 for its holiday campaign — enough to provide 4.8 million meals into the 22 counties the Food Bank serves. There are several ways to get involved:
- Businesses or organizations can participate in ornament sales, register round-ups, and other donation initiatives (contact Connie Peters, firstname.lastname@example.org, for more information).
- Individuals or organizations can participate in virtual food drives and even have friendly competitions among teams in businesses or groups (contact Kelly Belcher, email@example.com, for more information).
- Make a donation online — every dollar donated allows the Food Bank to provide six meals.