Pandemic day 100 and Midwest Food Bank continues to fulfill its mission.
100 days into the pandemic, Midwest Food Bank continues to fulfill its mission and serve more than 2,000 non-profit partner organizations. In addition to providing food to partner agencies, Midwest Food Bank has provided disaster relief via family food boxes in partnership with Salvation Army. They have sourced, packed, and shipped more than 60,000 family food boxes to 28 different states in the past 100 days.
Midwest Food Bank, heavily dependent on volunteer support, has had to dramatically reduce and restructure the role of volunteers due to COVID-19 concerns. Further, the demand for their services has increased, due to high unemployment and economic uncertainty. MFB partner non-profits are experiencing about a 30% increase in traffic. The economic impact has the potential to last for several years.
Despite these challenges, Midwest Food Bank has stayed open, healthy, and safe. Operations have continued uninterrupted with social distancing and public health protocols in place.
COVID-19 has disrupted the food supply chain in the US and globally. Pre-pandemic, Midwest Food Bank operated with 4-5 weeks of supply inventory. This hit a low of 2.6 weeks in May and is now back to 3.7 weeks. Because of the variability in supply and access to donated food, Midwest Food Bank has purchased twice as much food in the past months as previous years. USDA Farm to Family food boxes of fruit, vegetables, meat, dairy, milk have been a huge boost and blessing since starting in June. Shelf-stable, dry and canned foods are still very limited in supply for both in-kind and purchase.
“This pandemic has caused us to shift our mode of operation on several fronts and in multiple ways,” says Eric Hodel, COO/CFO for Midwest Food Bank. “It has been a dynamic and challenging season, but I am so pleased with the response and perseverance of the MFB family of employees, volunteer and donors.”
Community, business, and household donor and volunteer support has been critical for Midwest Food Bank to continue their operations. “The generosity of our donors has been vital to our ability to help those in need,” says Karl Steidinger, Executive Director for Midwest Food Bank Florida. “It is humbling to see new households partnering in our mission in this difficult economic climate.
Financial donations give Midwest Food Bank the flexibility to respond to the increased need and serve the growing number of food insecure households. Midwest Food Bank’s efficient volunteer run operation multiplies donations. Every dollar donated provides over $30 in food to those in need.
Midwest Food Bank has 11 locations, including nine in the U.S., and one each in East Africa and Haiti. Its mission is to share the love of Christ by alleviating hunger and malnutrition locally and throughout the world and providing disaster relief; all without discrimination. Learn more at midwestfoodbank.org