As the challenges of this year continue to affect our community, Feeding San Diego is here to help. Last year the organization distributed over 31.2 million meals to the community, 92 percent of which was rescued food. While one may think those numbers are staggering, Feeding San Diego has experienced an unprecedented roughly 50 percent increase in need for food assistance across San Diego County since the pandemic hit – its services are more in demand than ever. Feeding San Diego has always been on a mission to connect every person facing hunger with nutritious meals by maximizing food rescue. That mission now takes on heightened significance due to the crisis at hand.
Since March, Feeding San Diego has been hard at work to make sure no one in our community goes hungry. With its increased and adapted services in place, the organization is working around the clock to meet the needs of those impacted by hardships caused by the pandemic and recent wildfires. At its hundreds of drive-through distributions throughout the county, the organization connects directly with those in our community who need a hand in tough times. These faces of hunger, both new and existing, demonstrate the need for togetherness in challenging times.
“We are not able to work because of the coronavirus and we have a large family, so every little bit that we do get, it helps,” Maryelena, a Feeding San Diego client shared with GB Magazine.
As more San Diegans find themselves out of work or in unstable work situations, it has put many people in an unimaginable position, some for the first time in their lives: how to put food on the table. Hunger is a problem that affects all people: families, children, seniors. While some of these people may not have needed Feeding San Diego before, when the need arose, they had somewhere to turn. The quick action Feeding San Diego took this spring continues as we head into the holiday season.
“The stability that comes with the food distribution is just marvelous, it helps alleviate the food insecurity so many people are facing right now,” shares Kristen, a Feeding San Diego client in partnership with Armed Services YMCA. Kristen is a stay-at-home mom of three children and her husband has been serving in the U.S. Military for over 15 years. Kristen never misses a food distribution. “I have two ten-year-old boys and a seven-year old girl, this distribution has been absolutely amazing for my family. The drive-through-style is completely stress-free and comforting because I don’t have to go to the store during this scary time.”
Feeding San Diego works with farmers, manufacturers, distributors and retailers to rescue food from all along the food supply chain. With an emphasis on nutrition, the organization prides itself on providing not just pantry staples, but vibrant fresh produce that will bring families together over healthy meals. Together with its partners, Feeding San Diego has been working to change the perception of who is hungry in San Diego, telling the stories of those who need a helping hand.
Through it all, Feeding San Diego is here. To learn more about Feeding San Diego, visit www.feedingsandiego.org.