PALM BEACH COUNTY, Fla. — The Palm Beach County Food Bank says times are critical right now when it comes to feeding those in need.
"We are doing everything we can to get as much food as possible to as many people as possible," Karen Erren, the executive director of the Palm Beach County Food Bank said.
The food bank ships out five days a week. Their goal is to give out 100,000 pounds per week. But Erren said some of the organizations they work with have closed temporarily because of the pandemic.
"Pre-COVID-19 we had about 125 partners food pantry, soup kitchens, and shelters that were taking care of our community. Right now, we have about 90 active partners," she said.
So how does she keep the shelves stocked?
Erren said Palm Beach County is very generous. But she's also been humbled by the number of local farmers who regularly donate produce.
"Every week to ten days at least a hundred pallets," she said.
This year her budget is roughly $13.7 million, food makes up about $10 million of the total.
Erren has 25 employees and approximately 2,500 volunteers a year. Volunteers like Sam Wickes who bring about 100 pounds of food every time he shows up.
With me donating in here, volunteering makes me that I'm sort of donating a future responsibility," he said.
Erren said a person can have many problems but a hungry person has one. So she's doing what she can to eliminate the issue of sustenance.
"These are truly unprecedented times," she said.