Feeding Hungry Marylanders Through COVID-19
For many, fear of the COVID-19 pandemic is motivating action: people are rushing to the stores to stock up on food, water, gas, and so on. Unfortunately, not everyone in Maryland can afford the resources to prepare and prevent.
As essential second responders, the Maryland Food Bank is working diligently to continue core operations amidst this public health crisis. For 40 years, we’ve served as the hub of the food assistance safety net, and we will continue to be here for our neighbors in need, especially during times of uncertainty.
We are committed to ensuring food continues to come in and out of our doors with minimal disruption
First and foremost, we are buying food by the truckload, ensuring our shelves and the shelves of our community partners are stocked to serve their communities for months to come.
We are constantly communicating with these partners and keeping them updated with the latest information, including recommending various safe distribution practices, such as cutting back on large-scale events, distributing prebagged food, and taking client intake information verbally.
The closure of schools and businesses as well as widespread social distancing has put many of our neighbors at risk of losing their income and they will likely turn to their local food pantry for assistance. That’s why we are encouraging partners to remain open and working with them to find creative distribution solutions.
In addition, we are adapting distribution methods in close coordination with school staff. Some school districts have already developed an independent plan to feed students while schools are closed, and some have reached out to us for help. We have also begun to distribute “Grab & Go” meals for students at select sites that typically host MFB Summer Clubs in locations across central Maryland.
And while there have been some senior site closures, we are providing sites that remain open double the amount of food they may need to ensure senior residents have access to food for the foreseeable future.
Given the constantly changing scenarios, our operations team and volunteers are also assembling “Back Up Boxes,” which are filled with most wanted items, like pasta, peanut butter, canned tuna, and canned vegetables. These boxes will serve as a “back up” in situations where our programs and regular distribution channels are not available.
We will continue to serve on our mission’s promise, with adjustments to adhere to local, state, and federal safety guidelines to help reduce the spread of the virus. At this time, we do need healthy volunteers to help out in our warehouse. Our volunteer team has implemented safety precautions and promoting health protocols set forth by the CDC.
It will take all of us working together to get through this unprecedented time. If you would like to join in this effort, please donate as generously as you can at mdfoodbank.org/backupbox or sign up for a volunteer shift at mdfoodbank.org/volunteer.
Without you, none of this important work would be possible. If you have any questions, feel free to reach out to MFB’s President & CEO, Carmen Del Guercio at firstname.lastname@example.org. We will keep updating our response as our plans evolve.
The Maryland Food Bank Family
We Need Your Help
Programs, campaigns, and educational outreach at the Maryland Food Bank has always relied on the philanthropic support of charitable individuals like you.
Much like our food distribution efforts, outreach activities at the Maryland Food Bank rely on generous donations of money and time.
We hope you’ll consider a contribution.