Arkansas Foodbank increasingly busy, seeing more food insecure families during COVID-19

Local News

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. – The Arkansas Foodbank says there is an increasing need for food while coronavirus progresses. 

Employees are still working in the warehouse trying to help provide to Arkansans in need. During the time of COVID-19, they have had about double the requests they are used to. 
“Last year in March we distributed 1.6 million pounds of food. This year in March we distributed 2.6 million pounds of food,” said Arkansas Foodbank CEO Rhonda Sanders. 
Sanders says her organization is filling the need for students who rely on daily meals at school. 

“The main role we have played is to pack emergency food boxes they are able to send with the children in the grab and go line.” 

She says they are also seeing more people than every before visit Arkansas food pantries because many people are without a job or paycheck. 
“One group reported they had 111 new people show up at their pantry last week,” she said. 

She says they have been preparing for coronavirus and the impact it would have in Arkansas for weeks. They have tried to get ahead of the grocery store shortage many are facing right now. 
“We started placing orders in advance as far out as we could to try and get on the waitlist,” Sanders said. 

She says during this time of uncertainty, filling the gap of food insecurity essential. 
‘”It’s been challenging but yet when we see the need, and we see how grateful everyone is for the food, it’s okay,” Sanders said. 

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