As Iowans and Nebraskans continue to struggle with the community and economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, many find themselves in the unfamiliar position of seeking emergency food assistance.
The Food Bank for the Heartland is committed to helping those in need and is partnering with Council Bluffs Community Schools to host a free drive-up mobile pantry today from 4:30 to 6 p.m. today at Gale Wickersham Athletic Complex, 715 N. 21st St. The purpose of the event is to assist food-insecure individuals and families in Pottawattamie County and the surrounding communities. There are no requirements to attend, but those planning to attend must enter by Wilson Middle School on N. 21st St. (Refer to map.)
Two hundred and forty community packs will be available, which are 28-pound prepackaged boxes filled with various nonperishable staple items. Fresh produce and sliced bread will also be offered.
Volunteers are assembling the community packs at Food Bank for the Heartland. They are practicing social distancing in the volunteer center, and, as always volunteers are washing their hands and following food safety guidelines.
A drive-up distribution method is being used in Council Bluffs to prioritize the health and safety of the community during this pandemic. Individuals and families coming to the mobile pantry should stay in their vehicles. Volunteers will help direct traffic and load the food for them.
“During this unprecedented time, Food Bank for the Heartland is working swiftly with our partners across Nebraska and western Iowa to provide critical meals to our neighbors struggling due to the community and economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic,” Brian Barks, president and CEO of Food Bank for the Heartland, said in a press release. “The need for emergency and supplemental food has increased significantly in recent weeks. We estimate the number of clients being served has increased 38 percent compared to a year ago. Thank you to Council Bluffs Community Schools. We are grateful for the outpouring of support from individuals, organizations and companies across the Heartland.”
Visit foodbankheartland.org/covid-19 for information about additional emergency and supplemental food resources.
If members of the community are seeking opportunities to help their neighbors in need during the pandemic, they are encouraged to visit FoodBankHeartland.org to make a financial donation to purchase additional food and to obtain information about volunteering to help assemble community packs of nonperishable food items being distributed at pantries, emergency meal providers and through the Food Bank’s Mobile Pantry program.
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