The Food Bank is The Emergency Feeding PlanPosted: September 23, 2018
Most of you know my nineteen year affiliation with the Food Bank of Central and Eastern North Carolina. I really got to learn the workings of our Food Bank early on when hurricane’s Fran and Floyd did major damage in our state. Because back then so many people were displaced for so long the team at the Food Bank became experts on helping provide food to people who never before needed help for a very long time.
When Katrina hit the gulf coast it was the team from the Food Bank of CENC who were called into the Gulf to train their Food Banks how to manage feeding in these conditions.
The Food Bank is a non-profit agency, not a government one, but it is the Food Bank that the government depends on to manage and feed people in need. Government feeding programs like TEFAP, which stands for The Emergency Food Assistance Program are government funded programs but the food is distributed through the Food Bank. The government has no other way to directly supply food or feed people in need.
During this disaster called Florence many agencies, like the Red Cross, Salvation Army and Baptist Men come in and set up feeding sites where people are being housed while they are flooded out. The Food Bank of CENC works with over 860 different local agencies to get food out to the people who need it.
What we know is that after the flood waters recede and the shelters close people have to go back to their ruined homes and try and rebuild. It takes years. Most don’t have flood insurance. Most need help with basics, the most basic of which is to have food daily.
This disaster is one that will impact the work of the Food Bank for years.
There is no more dedicated staff than those men and women at the Food Bank. Thankfully we now have a new headquarters in Raliegh where we can handle double the numbers of volunteers, who keep coming to help pack food to be sent to our branches in Wilmington and New Bern. But those branches are small and already were working to capacity before the disaster with just regular help to those who are food insecure.
If you have been blessed by not having any damage during the storm and want to find a way to help people in hurricane damaged areas, please consider a gift to the Food Bank or CENC. It is a professionally run organization with the infrastructure and experience to best put your money to work. Every dollar donated to the food Bank of CENC is turned into 5 meals. It is so much better for you to donate money and let the Food Bank leverage that into more and the kind of food needed in these devastated areas.
Don’t think for a minute that the government has an emergency feeding agency. They rely on the Food Bank to be their agency. As Florence begins to disappear from the news, the Food Bank will quietly be there for the long haul. They need all our help.
Visit www.foodbankofcenc.org to make a donation, or call me if you would like to talk about how you can make a significant gift.