MIAMI (CBSMiami) – The coronavirus pandemic has prompted a record demand for food and the leader of the country’s 2nd busiest food bank is worried about meeting the needs in the months ahead.
CBS4 spoke with Paco Velez on this Black Friday, inside the warehouse of Feeding South Florida.
The organization’s CEO told us demand has doubled for deliveries in Monroe, Miami-Dade, Broward, and Palm Beach Counties.
Federal funds from the coronavirus food assistance program are about to run out, shifting more of the burden back on communities to spend millions of dollars to take care of their counties.
We’ve seen huge lines this week for food distributions this week in Miami-Dade like this one at the Greater Miami Jewish Federation on Wednesday. And even on this Friday, some lined up as well in northwest Miami-Dade for food.
“It truly is heartbreaking to see people go to these lines. Older adults and children in cars. They are desperate and they are afraid and they don’t know if they will get their jobs back,” said Velez of Feeding South Florida.
“The reason I am here is the lack of services and work and the pandemic,” said Victor Gonzalez, who was there picking up food. “This is great. It means a lot. This is a great help.”
A national study reveals that because of the pandemic four out of ten people have been forced to join these lines for the first time. Velez urges you to give what you can to food banks like feeding South Florida.
“This could have been anybody. Many people do not have resources and need help. Please help your neighbors and their kids. We are here to help to make sure that everyone has food,” said Velez.
If you need help or would like to donate, go to the organization’s website here.