The government shutdown has temporarily ended but it is not yet known when federal workers will receive their back pay. That is why the Food Bank for the Heartland will continue with plans to hold a mobile food pantry in Bellevue today for federal workers having problems making ends meet.
President and CEO Brian Barks says they have upwards of 14,000 pounds of food ready to be distributed. He says, “We will be distributing all kinds of food from fresh produced to bakery to canned goods to dry goods. They will receive a sizable amount of food to get them through a week or so, depending on the size of their family.”
Barks says all federal workers in Nebraska can participate. Lutheran Family Services of Nebraska will also be on site to provide access to their programs that includes services for veterans, behavioral health needs, workforce development, children services and other support.
The mobile food pantry will be at Chandler View Elementary at 7800 S 25th Street in Bellevue from 5:30 to 7:30. Those attending are asked to bring their own bags or boxes to transport the food.
Barks says, “This is something outside of what we normally have budgeted. Earlier this month we made a $10,000 purchase of food in order to get an infusion of product into our warehouse to not only support this mobile pantry but to support the other efforts we normally do. After Monday, we will have to access what will need to be done in the future.”
The Food Bank provides food t nearly 500 partners in 77 counties in Nebraska and 15 in western Iowa. The Food Bank’s Mobile Pantry program delivers food directly to communities that have a high need but limited resources. In 2018, nearly 400 mobile pantries were held in their service area.