The VA Peninsula Foodbank is still working to help families that are food insecure! They have no-contact food drop off procedures for those that can donate or you can mail food donation packages to their headquarters! They are also hosting mobile pantries that take food to neighborhoods and are working with their community partners to make sure food is still accessible during this emergency.
Here is information from the organization and ways that you can help:
Virginia Peninsula Foodbank is open and does not expect to close. We are considered an essential, life sustaining business like the grocery stores. Our main priority is to continue our operations for as long as possible. Below is a summary of activity for our major programs as of today (subject to change):
Partner Agency Food Distribution – Continues at most locations. Since most of our partners are church food pantries operated by senior/elderly volunteers, many of them have chosen to close. Those that remain open, we have advised them to practice low contact distributions.
Individual Food Assistance at the Foodbank – After the appointments that have already been set up (through March 31), for efficiency purposes, we are discontinuing serving individuals at the Foodbank and are directing them to our mobile pantries.
Mobile Pantries – We continue to operate this much needed program using drive-throughs, with this week being a normal heavy schedule because it is late in the month. Today we served 300 households at An Achievable Dream Academy; our average normal household count there is 220. On Thursday, we will hold our VA Medical Center mobile pantry at the HU Convocation Center overflow parking lot. We are preparing to serve 450 households instead of 225. Most of our mobile pantries at low income senior living facilities were cancelled by the site managers over the past two weeks. We are expecting to announce mass drive-through food distributions starting the week of March 30 as more of our partner agencies close and as more workers are laid off or miss paychecks. Our first planned event is in Gloucester on Monday because one of our largest partner agencies in Gloucester had to close last week. We are working with various officials in the larger cities to plan these food distributions.
BackPack Program – We are continuing to provide BackPack bags of food for the weekend at sites where Hampton, Newport News, and Williamsburg/JCC are distributing lunches and certain other locations where children cannot get to the “Grab and Go” school lunches. We are also offering BackPack bags to some of our agencies who have asked (SAME, Thrive). As of today, we are expecting to deliver over 1,300 of these bags, compared to 1,550 per week before the virus hit.
Kids Cafe afterschool meals – Not operating hot meal program but supplying bagged meals to C. Waldo Scott Center, Buckroe Point Apts., and others who request them. Currently only at 80 per day.
SHARE Program – Not operating during the month of April.
We have cancelled all our volunteers at the Foodbank to protect the health of the staff so we can keep operating. Staff will pack as many BP bags, food boxes, and produce bags as we can on our own in anticipation of the mass distributions.
We have purchased several truckloads of food and are waiting for them to be received since our donated food inventory has been low all year.
We are anxiously awaiting word from VDACS (Virginia Dept. of Agriculture and Consumer Services) that TEFAP/USDA commodities have been released for all (waiving the income requirement). We have plenty of this food because of the Trade Mitigation commodities. Just waiting……
The best way to support us is to donate funds so we can purchase food!
To get help, go to our website to find a partner agency, but CALL FIRST to make sure they are open. We will also be announcing the larger mobile pantry locations via various media.
Last updated 3/29/2020