The Coronavirus Pandemic (COVID-19) hit the US in December 2019 and by March 2020 if influenced every aspect of Second Harvest’s regular operation. Throughout the pandemic, Second Harvest never closed the doors once.
In the months following the March 2020 COVID-19 lockdown, Second Harvest saw a 26 percent increase in need in the community.
From March to June 2020, on average, 10 semi-truckloads of food were delivered each week to keep up with the demand for food.
Second Harvest packed and distributed 37,255 Emergency COVID Relief Boxes.
Due to safety concerns, Second Harvest pivoted from distributing cases of food to agencies to providing the emergency boxes instead. Agencies were able to more quickly handout already packed boxes of food, along with a box of fresh produce, a ½ gallon of milk, a dozen of eggs, a loaf of bread and 2 frozen meat items. Second Harvest did this so that the agencies could provide a no-touch, drive through distribution to clients.
Second Harvest moved all produce express distributions to a drive through format to limit contact among volunteers, clients, and staff.
Also in 2020, Second Harvest received a grant that made it possible to provide 43 refrigerator and freezer units to agencies. By providing these units, agencies could receive more frozen meats, and fresh produce and perishable food such as milk, cheese, and eggs which provide healthier options to clients.