Mid-South Food Bank serving thousands of families a day during COVID-19 pandemic

Mid-South Food Bank serving thousands of families a day during COVID-19 pandemic

MEMPHIS, Tenn. (WMC) - The Mid-South Food Bank says it is seeing a major spike in the number of families who don't have enough to eat.

Job layoffs and furloughs from the coronavirus are to blame.

There is already a lot of people in the Mid-South who are food insecure. And now with so many people not working because of the coronavirus, the food bank is seeing almost double the families who need food.

"There was poverty before, but we are seeing more of it now in the season of the pandemic,” said Sara Dorrien-Christians, Idlewild Presbyterian Church Associate Pastor.

You could see it in the long line at Idlewild Presbyterian Church -- where volunteers handed out kitchen staples to families who are food insecure.

Cathy Pope, Head Of the Mid-South Food Bank, says there have been long lines at mobile distribution sites like this since the pandemic started.

The program moves to different churches and non-profits every day... and is an easier way to get food to families.

"We're seeing a lot more households and families, households show up than we were expecting hoping to serve 400 or 500 and 900 are showing up,” said Pope.

The Mid-South Food Bank serves 31 counties across the Mid-South and Pope says the demand is sky-rocketing.

"Our projections … are 573,000 individuals food insecure. Last year, we distributed an average 1.3 million pounds a month. Our projection is, we need 2.7 million pounds every month,” said Pope.

The food bank gets half of its food donated from businesses and manufacturers.

Cathy Pope says cash is the best thing you can donate because they can buy in bulk and get more for the money.

The food bank is also adding a new service for at-risk residents who can't get out of their house. The Neighborhood Christian Center will provide volunteers to bring the food to their door.

The food bank is hoping the state will donate additional food.

To donate to the food bank, click here.

Copyright 2020 WMC. All rights reserved.