COVID-19 presents some very urgent challenges to our community and the nation. Two, in particular, directly bear on the Local Food Hub’s mission:
Feeding the neediest in our community through this crisis: Today, more than half of children across the country are out of school indefinitely. Without coordinated intervention, children, the elderly, and others who rely on free and reduced-price food will not get the meals and nutrition they need. Food banks and pantries are overwhelmed by demand.
Helping Virginia farmers weather the economic impacts: Local producers are in a moment of extreme uncertainty and vulnerability, as many of the buyers they rely on, such as universities, K12 schools, and restaurants, have shut their doors or are trimming their operations. Farms operate on razor-thin financial margins, and this social and economic crisis is going to impact them hard. To shop at our drive-through market, go here.
The good news is that local and regional food systems – Local Food Hub’s specialty – are agile, resilient, and responsive. Ours is still functioning and flowing. The global supply chain, by contrast, is showing signs of strain; the long aisles of empty shelves are one indicator. As COVID-19 spreads, food brought in from other regions may become harder to access, and people may begin to trust it less.
Local Food Hub is committed to bridging the gaps. We know how to harness our local and regional food systems to create community solutions in this time of crisis. PLEASE SUPPORT OUR WORK!
Your donation will support:
- Purchasing food or subsidizing the purchasing of food from Local Food Hub partner farms for emergency feeding efforts, including the adaptation of the Fresh Farmacy: Fruit and Veggie Prescription Program as appropriate
- Opening diverse markets for farms, including direct relationships with buyers and alternative farmers markets
- Our leadership and coordination with community organizations including the Charlottesville Food Justice Network, in their efforts to feed those in need
Our work in action: On March 16, a meal program at The Haven, a day shelter for the homeless in Charlottesville, was about to fall through due to the closure of a church that normally provided that meal. In this breach, Local Food Hub coordinated an effort among 4P Foods, Charlottesville Food Justice Network, The Haven, Albemarle Baking Company, Loaves and Fishes, and Cultivate C’Ville to provide sandwiches, snacks, and fruit–much of which was sourced from Virginia family farms–to 100 patrons of the Haven.
This type of demand-supply scenario is going to repeat itself in the days and weeks to come. Local Food Hub is uniquely positioned to redirect the food from our farms to those who need it. Thank you for your support.