Once again, the Sequim Food Bank and dedicated community volunteers helped hundreds of locals with meals for the holiday season.
On Dec. 18, residents in vehicles flocked to Carrie Blake Community Park to receive food bags for the Christmas season, as organizers shifted its holiday meal program from the Alder Street facility to the park in order to better accommodate COVID-19 protocols.
Andra Smith, Sequim Food Bank’s executive director, said the food bank and volunteers provided food for 818 families via the drive-thru event and delivered to 18 homes.
“I think it went well,” Smith said. “Our hope was to gear this bag to provide extra food for families and not just be one meal.
It did have some holiday foods in there, but this was mainly to help families this holiday season.”
For Thanksgiving distribution at the park on Nov. 20 and at the Sequim Food Bank on its next two business days, volunteers provided meals for 1,040 families. Some drivers waited along Blake Avenue for up to 90 minutes for meals for the meal distribution day.
To counter that, Smith said, program organizers set up multiple rows to stage vehicles at Trinity United Methodist Church, 100 S. Blake Ave., as well as four drive-thru stations instead of three, helping cut down the maximum wait time to 45 minutes.
Locals can pick up more food from the COVID Relief Food Care Package program from 11 a.m.-2 p.m. Wednesday, Dec. 23, at Trinity United Methodist Church, 100 S. Blake Ave.
Smith said it’ll continue in 2021 on the second and fourth Wednesdays at the same time, every other week through at least March. Its first dates in 2021 are Jan. 13 and Jan. 27.
For the remainder of 2020, the Sequim Food Bank at 144 W. Alder St. is closed Christmas Day and New Year’s Day, but reopens Saturday, Dec. 26, and Friday, Jan. 2 — with regular hours set for 1-4 p.m. Mondays, and 9 a.m.-noon Fridays and Saturdays.
With growing demand during the pandemic, Smith said the food bank is purchasing more in bulk. The space limitations led the food bank to no longer accept food donations; however, Smith said they are looking at options to begin again next year.
In the meantime, the food bank is encouraging financial donations.
To support the Sequim Food Bank, visit www.sequimfoodbank.org, or contact Food Bank staff at 360-683-1205 or firstname.lastname@example.org.