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Suffolk business makes Foodbank donation

Quality Custom Distribution made a $10,000 donation to the Virginia Peninsula Foodbank to help in the agency’s efforts to meet the demand for food due to the coronavirus pandemic.

“Families that have never needed a foodbank before are reaching out to us for help,” said Virginia Peninsula Foodbank Director of Development Donna Tighe in a statement. “This generous and impactful donation will help us provide more nutritious meals to those who have lost their job, or who have been furloughed and are experiencing unexpected expenses with little left for food.

“We are so thankful and inspired by the team at Quality Custom Distribution, who believes in helping out their neighbors during times of an emergency.”

Prior to the pandemic, the service area for the Virginia Peninsula Foodbank had one of the highest levels of food insecurity in Virginia at 13.2 percent, higher than the state average of 10.2 percent.

“Our local foundation members in Suffolk felt an obligation to respond to the need in our community caused by the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Peter DelGiorno, Quality Custom Distribution general manager in a statement. “We have partnered previously with the great people at the Virginia Peninsula Foodbank, and it was an easy decision to allocate this grant of $10,000 to this organization.”

The Foodbank of Southeastern Virginia and the Eastern Shore, which has set up a food distribution point at the Suffolk Family YMCA, has also been reporting an increasing need for food. It is distributing food there from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. Tuesdays.

In Franklin, it is distributing food at the James L. Camp Jr. Family YMCA at 300 Crescent Drive from 9 to 11 a.m. Fridays, and at the Martin Luther King Jr. Community Center at 683 Oak St. from 9 to 11 a.m. Saturday and again April 25. The Foodbank of Southeastern Virginia and the Eastern Shore is also distributing food at locations in Chesapeake, Norfolk, Portsmouth, Virginia Beach and Courtland.

Since March 20, the Foodbank of Southeastern Virginia and the Eastern Shore has served 5,005 households over eight separate days at the Franklin and Suffolk YMCA sites, combined, since March 20, with a high of 747 households April 10.

The Southeastern foodbank is restarting its Healthy Food Pantry program, but on a virtual basis. It is recruiting people to participate in its pilot, and they will receive the same supplemental support services, such as nutrition education, except those services will be online.

Registration is taking place at the distribution sites in Franklin and Norfolk, and participants will receive meal kits, recipes and nutrition education. They will also be connected to a local food pantry to access services after June.

The Southeastern foodbank is also expanding home delivery of prepared meals to seniors through its partnership with Mercy Chefs, Senior Services of Southeastern Virginia and the YMCA distribution sites. Seniors who are experiencing food insecurity should contact Senior Services for more information and to register.