Visit our COVID-19 Preparedness & Response page for information on the precautions we are taking, the ways you can help, and how to find food.

The Food Bank is committed to serving those in need, and we’re very thankful for the trust that’s placed in us – by our donors, our volunteers, by our Partner Agencies.  We could never do this important work alone.  Below are just some of the ways we’re working to safely get food out into the community throughout COVID-19.

The urgent need of the people in our 34 counties has been unprecedented—and so has the Food Bank’s response. Before the COVID-19 pandemic, there were 547,720 individuals, families, and seniors in central and eastern North Carolina facing hunger. This includes 169,770 children and teens, who did not always know when their next meal would be. These numbers were down significantly from what we knew for 2016, when nearly 600,000 people were facing hunger in our 34 counties. Our strategies for nourishing people, building solutions, and empowering communities were working to break the cycle of hunger! Unfortunately, and unsurprisingly, a new study from Feeding America projects the number of food-insecure neighbors in our service area to grow by 38%, including 49% growth for children and teens. That means approximately 756,320 people (1 in 5 people) may face hunger in 2020, including 253,570 children (1 in 3 children).

Even with a 38% increase in need, and despite food supply chain challenges unlike any we’ve seen in the Food Bank’s 40 year history, we’ve been able to distribute a record amount of food to the community thanks to our network of partner agencies. These efforts and impacts would not be possible without the incredibly generous support of our donors. They reached out immediately to find out what was needed, and thanks to their generosity, we are able to keep the level of food going to our partner agencies consistent. We've also received support from federal and state government resources for programs, food, and funds. We’re very grateful to have the trust of this community to address the urgent need for hunger relief.

COVID-19 demand vs. resources

Another 357 boxes of food distributed to veterans, active duty military, and their spouses – this time in Hillsborough. Thank you Gary Sinise Foundation for the additional funding that enabled our Sandhills Branch to expand this program beyond Moore County. Thanks also to North Carolina National Guard for carrying out the distribution & supporting our COVID-19 relief work. Partnership Power!

     

Fridges, and coolers, and freezers – oh my! These appliances are heading to our local Partner Agency food pantries, to increase their capacity for perishable foods. This is a big deal because the more produce, diary, & meats they can receive from the Food Bank, the more healthy food they can distribute to neighbors in need!

Special thanks to our sister food bank, MANNA FoodBank!

A mother with 6 children came to the Food Bank, urgently needing food. “We will take whatever you can give,” she said. “We didn’t have enough food to eat last night, so they are extra hungry today.” Thanks to your support, our Office Administrator Laurel provided her with a box of emergency groceries, a list of local Partner Agency food pantries, and quite a bit of the extra bread we had on hand that day. Thank you for making this important work possible!

Our farmer and grower partners have been incredibly generous with their donations of produce! We are very thankful to have fresh and nutritious food available to serve people during this time of increased need.

     

Web traffic to our food pantry directory (foodbankcenc.org/findhelp) has skyrocketed since COVID-19 reached North Carolina.

This April we distributed a record-breaking 7.68 million pounds of food to our community. This is the largest single-month distribution the Food Bank has recorded in its 40-year history.

During this time of unprecedented need, we’re thankful for the added support from our donors and partner agencies, and the work that went into ensuring people who need this food could receive it:

• Increased transportation resources to provide additional food to communities
• Coordinated with new partners to ensure needs are being met for people across our 34 counties
• Increased the distribution of fresh produce, thanks to our farmer and grower partners

We don’t yet know the long term impact COVID-19 will have, but as always, the Food Bank is here for the long haul.

Three reasons we’re grateful for our Housekeepers, Larry & Jacky: they’ve always upheld the highest level of cleanliness & sanitation; as COVID-19 means more cleaning, they’ve risen to the occasion; and on top of everything, they also pack emergency food boxes for neighbors in need!

          

Ms. Evangeline January is a nurse in addition to running the First Cosmopolitan Baptist Church Of Raleigh pantry (our Partner Agency). She’s been working 13 hour shifts at Raleigh Rehab. Now she has a couple days off, and is making sure she’s helping all she can with the pantry. They were used to serving around 100 people a day, but that’s doubled since the COVID-19 crisis started. Cars have been wrapped around their building, down the street for food. The increase is mostly folks who have recently lost their jobs and have not needed this kind of help before. Let’s hear it for the Hunger Heroes throughout our network of nearly 900 Partner Agencies, ensuring good food gets directly into the hands of neighbors in need during this pandemic!