A message from President and CEO, Joel Sjostrom
It’s hard to believe a year has gone by since COVID-19 came and turned our lives upside down. The resulting recession made food insecurity rates skyrocket, and what we once referred to as an “unprecedented” demand has simply become the norm. With food distribution scheduled seven days a week, we are now serving 100,000 more people each month than before the pandemic.
We learned firsthand from the Great Recession that the negative effects of an economic downfall on hunger are not tallied in months, but years. So in moving forward during the COVID-19 Recession, we are focusing our efforts on:
- Expanding our capacity to responsibly and efficiently sustain the elevated need and grow our programs to ensure we are reaching all of our food-insecure neighbors (see page 3).
- Adapting and preparing for other crises (including wildfires, earthquakes) that will inevitably occur during the extensive recovery period.
- Engaging our 240 partner agencies, legislators, counties, volunteers and the community at large—all of whom played an integral part in our COVID-19 Emergency Response to date.
- Advocating at the local and federal level as part of our effort to lead the fight against hunger. We were recently inducted into Feeding America’s Advocacy Hall of Fame for our extensive efforts in 2020. It is our responsibility to speak up for those who don’t have a voice.
We hope after reading this COVID Impact Report, you’ll better understand the vital role the Food Bank of Contra Costa and Solano plays in fighting food insecurity and building resiliency within our community. Even though there are many challenges ahead, I’m personally feeling inspired because 2020 solidified what I already knew—we can accomplish great things when we work together!
President and CEO
Food Bank of Contra Costa and Solano