The Harry Chapin Food Bank will also be sending a mobile pantry truck and driver along with the box truck and driver heading to the Panhandle area to help Hurricane Michael victims.
The drivers will leave with their trucks full of food Friday morning, headed for the Second Harvest of the Big Bend food bank in Tallahassee, which is currently without power.
The mobile pantry truck will go along with the box truck because “we saw that mobile pantries are so effective in getting into rural areas, and it’s a great way to distribute a lot of food to a lot of folks very efficiently,” said Eric Hitzeman, director of food bank operations. Food bank staff members who volunteered to make the trip are Jose Soto-Cruz, who will drive the mobile pantry truck, and Edson Pagan, who will drive the box truck.
The mobilization is in response to Feeding Florida’s request for help. Harry Chapin Food Bank is a member of Feeding Florida, the association of Florida’s 12 food banks, as is Second Harvest of the Big Bend. Other Feeding Florida food banks are also mobilizing to send water and other resources in response to requests for assistance.
Robin Safley, executive director of Feeding Florida, said: “Our statewide network of food banks is an essential part of emergency and disaster efforts, as we support many of the front-line services aimed at providing essential items during response and recovery efforts. The network has already pre-placed 245,000 ready-to-eat meals and 192,000 water bottles in target impact areas.”
The Harry Chapin Food Bank and its sister food banks in Florida are also members of the national Feeding America network of 200 food banks, which quickly moved in to help in the Carolinas in the aftermath of Hurricane Florence, and is now mobilizing to help in the aftermath of Hurricane Michael.
To find out more details about what the Feeding Florida food banks are doing to provide relief in the aftermath of Hurricane Michael, or to donate to help, visit www.feedingflorida.org, and click on the Hurricane Michael help box.
You can also send a check or financial donation to the Harry Chapin Food Bank locations in Fort Myers or Naples:
- Fort Myers Distribution Center, 3760 Fowler St., Fort Myers, FL 33901
- Collier County Center, 3940 Prospect Ave., Unit 101, Naples, FL 34104
Donations designated for Hurricane Michael relief will be passed on to Feeding Florida or sister food banks in the affected areas. Or, donate by visiting harrychapinfoodbank.org.