These are challenging times for us all. Thank you for diving in to ensure that our neighbors could rely on the Food Bank of Northwest Indiana as a source of support. Many of our neighbors are turning to us for the first time in their lives. Others need us more than ever before. The work of the Food Bank of Northwest Indiana has never been so critical. During this crisis, your support has allowed us to:
- Increase Lake County individuals served by 70% since February
- Increase Porter County individuals served by 40% since February
- Provide nearly 3,554,704 meals since February
- Distribute nearly 2,962,254 pounds of food since February
- Increase Mobile Market distributions and partnerships by 70% since February
- Provide emergency assistance grants of more than $70,000 to our 111 pantry partners
The need is great, and we are continuing to respond. We have been reviewing the past couple of months and assessing the current and future food needs of our neighbors. We now know that it will cost approximately $2,308,341 over the next six months to meet the need for food assistance caused by the COVID-19 crisis. Based on 5 critical COVID-19 related challenges, we have determined the related cost impact to the Food Bank of Northwest Indiana:
Challenge 1: Increased Demand (i.e. 90% of Mobile Market Distributions Run Out of Food)
Challenge 2: Declines in Food Donations & Cost to Purchase Food – $1,584,651
Challenge 3: Declines in Non-Food Donations – $53,527
Challenge 4: Volunteer Decline vs. Increased Labor Impact – $133,439
Challenge 5: Increased Distribution & Equipment Costs – $536,725
Although COVID-19 restrictions are lifting, our neighbors are still experiencing the effects of the pandemic. Unemployment rates have surged to “Great Recession” levels, with mass unexpected layoffs, furloughs, and pay cuts. School closings continue to negatively impact family budgets. High risk, disabled, and immuno-compromised seniors still need grocery home delivery options. In short, individuals and families continue to need food assistance as we slowly transition out of the crisis into a new normal.
THANK YOU for all of your gifts and support. Continue to keep us in your well wishes. Continue to stay engaged. Continue to give to help us provide food to our neighbors during this time. And we will continue to minimize the effects of hunger in our community, getting food to the children, seniors, individuals, and families who need it most.