Thank you for standing with Food Gatherers through Fiscal Year 2020 (July 1, 2019-June 30, 2020) with its extraordinarily challenging last quarter!
The COVID-19 pandemic presented a complex crisis of increased demand, declines in donations of food, and disruptions to our established processes for distributing food to those in need.
We are incredibly grateful for the outpouring of community support. Last spring, your generosity allowed us to provide our community partners with enough food to stay open and to meet the historic rise in demand brought on by the first wave of the virus.
We know we’re not out of the woods yet. Right now, we are working with our network of partner agencies and programs to deliver as much food as possible to our community to meet the continued need. At the same time, we know the economic impact of this pandemic will likely last for years and we are actively planning for the future and thinking through sustainable ways to continue providing food for all who need it.
Gathering with you,
COVID-19: Impact on Food Distribution
In mid-March, Food Gatherers and our network of partner pantries jumped into action to address the sudden rise in food insecurity as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. Since March, almost 100% of the food we distributed was at no cost to our partners, allowing their resources to be directed toward their emergency response. Food Gatherers also provided cash grants so partners could invest in equipment or staff to expand access to people needing food.
Even with a 30% surge in requests and 1,300 new visitors, SOS always had food for everyone because of Food Gatherers. We never closed or cut back services thanks to you!
- Barbara Cecil, Development Director, SOS Community Services
More than 5,565 volunteers donated 63,183 hours of service inspecting, sorting, packaging, and distributing food, as well as preparing and serving meals.
Ten members of the Michigan National Guard served more than 4,000 hours at the Food Gatherers’ warehouse; between April - June 2020 they constructed more than 15,000 emergency food boxes.
Background photo: Staff and interns from We the People Opportunity Farm pose next to carrot statues after a tour and volunteer day at Food Gatherers' warehouse
Revenue and Expenses
The generous support of our community in response to the COVID-19 pandemic allowed Food Gatherers to immediately increase the amount of food distributed to our community partners; since March 2020, almost 100% of the food distributed was at no cost to our partners.
Early on, Food Gatherers provided our community partners with PPE, cleaning supplies, hand sanitizer, and other support needed so they could stay open and quickly pivot to food distributions that met public health guidelines. Looking forward, sustaining the needed level of food in our community will require ongoing investments in infrastructure, programs, food costs and our partners.
Background photo: Close-up of a pile of oranges