BAINBRIDGE – On Tuesday, Congressman Dave Joyce (OH-14) joined members of the Ohio National Guard at the Greater Cleveland Food Bank’s East Side headquarters, helping them transport, package and distribute food to those in need in OH-14 communities.
“It was an honor to work with the staff of the Greater Cleveland Food Bank as well as members of the Ohio National Guard to help serve those in need,” said Joyce. “This is an unprecedented time, but we are in it together. Communities in Northeast Ohio couldn’t have asked for more dedicated and compassionate men and women to come to their aid during this outbreak than those who I worked alongside yesterday. I am thankful for everything the Greater Cleveland Food Bank and the Ohio National Guard are doing to support those who have been impacted by the COVID-19 outbreak and remain committed to working across the aisle in Washington to ensure everyone on the front lines of this outbreak has the resources they need to overcome the challenges that lie ahead.”
“We are incredibly grateful to Congressman Joyce for taking the time during this crisis to help us distribute food to our neighbors in need,” said Kristin Warzocha, President and CEO of the Greater Cleveland Food Bank. “More than 4,000 people were served, with two-thirds being families who had never been to our facility for help before. We know that more and more people will continue to turn to us in the weeks and months ahead and we need to continue to be ready to meet the need.”
This was the food bank’s second drive-thru distribution event in the last two weeks, and by the end of the day, they had served an estimated 4,000 people. In the wake of the COVID-19 outbreak, the food bank adjusted its protocols quickly so that it could serve the influx of those in need while also following all health and social distancing guidance. Participants remained in their cars, providing their name and information before boxes of non-perishable food, roughly a week’s worth of groceries, were placed in their trunks by gloved volunteers, staff and Ohio National Guard servicemembers, so as to minimize contact and maintain social distance as the Ohio Department of Health has urged all Ohioans to do.
“I was so impressed by the new drive-thru distribution system they’d set up to meet the increased demand for food during the outbreak while also prioritizing the health and safety of their volunteers and the people they serve,” said Joyce.
The Greater Cleveland Food Bank is the largest hunger relief organization in Northeast Ohio having served more than 350,000 people in Cuyahoga, Ashtabula, Geauga, Lake, Ashland, and Richland counties last year alone. To learn more, visit their website here.
To view the thank you letter Joyce sent to the Adjutant General of the Ohio National Guard, click here.