Feeding Colorado is the collaborative effort of the five Colorado food banks to coordinate and enhance food resources, ensuring food insecure Coloradans have access to healthy, fresh foods. Together, the five food banks provide food to all 64 counties in Colorado and distribute food to more than 1,500 non-profit agencies statewide. These agencies include food pantries, soup kitchens, battered women’s shelters, daycare centers, residential treatment centers, along with senior and youth programs that serve all ages and segments of our communities. Last year, the five Colorado food banks distributed a combined 98 million pounds of food to those in need.
Now, in response to COVID-19, Food Bank of the Rockies has created an entirely new operational model based on the need to feed as many neighbors as possible, as they anticipate a $5-$10 million impact over the next 3-6 months, just in addressing the need from COVID-19. This operational model is now expanded to include 30 counties in Northern/Western Colorado and all of Wyoming.
Some numbers from all five Colorado Food Banks…
- 121.2 million pounds of food are distributed throughout Colorado
- 101.4 million meals are provided to neighbors in need
- 140 farmers in Colorado are dedicated to feeding Coloradans at risk of hunger
Some facts about Food Bank of the Rockies…
- Food Bank of the Rockies serves 30 counties in Colorado including metro Denver, the Western Slope and Eastern Plains as well as the entire state of Wyoming.
- Every dollar Food Bank of the Rockies receives helps provide four meals or five pounds of food.
- Food Bank of the Rockies distributes food to more than half a million people each year.
Some facts about Food Bank of the Rockies amid the COVID-19 crisis, as they join with the rest of Colorado and Wyoming to help those in need…
- In response to COVID-19, Food Bank of the Rockies has created an entirely new operational model based on the need to feed as many neighbors as possible, as they anticipate a $5-$10 million impact over the next 3-6 months, just in addressing the need resulting from COVID-19.
- Food Bank of the Rockies created innovative partnerships, for instance, with DispatchHealth, where they will have emergency food boxes in their vehicles for food insecure clients. They have also developed new or expanded partnerships with Rose Medical Center and Children’s Hospital to provide food for their patients and caregivers.
One more fact about Food Bank of the Rockies amid the COVID-19 crisis, as they join with the rest of Colorado and Wyoming to help those in need…
- Food Bank of the Rockies has launched their first drive-through mobile pantries so that they can keep their staff, volunteers, and clients socially distanced while providing pre-packaged food boxes to people experiencing food insecurity
Learn about Community Food Share,” focusing on Boulder and Broomfield Counties"…
- In the week following statewide school and business shutdowns from COVID-19, the food bank hit record-breaking distribution numbers for its Louisville facility.
- In the first three weeks of March, Community Food Share experienced a 37% increase in visits to its onsite pantry compared to the same time frame last year
CLIENT STORY: “My name is Rick, and I am a caregiver for my mom who has early onset dementia. After my car's engine died in December, I have not been able to work (even part-time) and have — for the first time in life — needed to ask for food assistance. We were lucky enough to get in to [affordable housing in Boulder] and that is when I first learned about your organization. It has really helped through this rough period of time, especially now when we are required to stay home, because catching this virus would likely require hospitalization. Without this help, it would cause even more stress and food insecurity. I really appreciate everything Community Food Share does. – Rick
NOTE: We’re especially humbled by Rick, because although he is in need of help, he’s also paying it forward — he donated to our COVID-19 Rapid Response Fund.
Learn about the Weld Food Bank in Weld County…
- In just two weeks, Weld Food Bank spent $150,000 on food.
- For every dollar donated to Weld Food Bank, they can provide four meals to their hungry neighbors.
- Weld Food Bank has reconfigured all its operation to incorporate social distancing and heightened their already rigorous sanitization practices to ensure the safety of clients, volunteers and staff.
CLIENT STORY: A young single mother with three children (two school age and one infant) broke down crying when a staff member told her we still had food available at one of our Mobile Food Pantry distributions. She was so grateful but could not stop crying because she lost her job in the service industry and has no way to support her family. She is worried about the added cost of food because her school-age children usually ate when they were at school, and they received food from our Backpack Program over the weekend. Now she has to feed both of her older children three meals a day. Because of this added expense, she is skipping most meals. As she talked through tears, she said she was worried that she would not be able to continue to breastfeed her newborn if she was not eating regularly. If that happens, she said she has no money to buy formula.
Learn more about the Care and Share Food Bank, which is focused on 31 counties in Southern Colorado…
- To address COVID-19, Care and Share has mobilized hundreds of volunteers in small groups to pack thousands of emergency food boxes for neighbors in need.
- Gifts of time and dollars help Care and Share to move quickly during emergencies. More info at careandshare.org/COVID19.
CLIENT STORY: An emergency situation like COVID-19 reminds us that schools are much more than students, teachers, classes and support staff. As communities of learning, schools also offer nutritional, health and emotional support systems for kids and families. Take Alyssa, for example. Alyssa is a fifth grader in Colorado Springs who loves learning about science. She lives with diabetes, and both she and her mother have food allergies. These combined factors make it challenging to afford healthy food that everyone in the family can eat. With help from Care and Share, Alyssa is able to bring home healthy foods that she, her mother and brothers can all enjoy. Alyssa especially likes cereal and mandarin oranges. Getting help through her school “makes me feel special,” says Alyssa. She smiles when she thinks about how the food help meets her family’s unique needs, and it reminds her that “people are thinking of me and that I want to be like other kids.”
Learn more about Food Bank for Larimer County…
- Last year, the Food Bank for Larimer County distributed 9,842,559 pounds of food.
- In 2019, their Fresh Food Share pantries logged more than 180,000 client visits.
CLIENT STORY: “Six heart surgeries can really put a dent in your savings account,” said Anthony, a retired bartender and FedEx driver. “I have to be incredibly careful with what I eat, that’s why I love the Food Bank. I can almost always find fresh fruit and vegetables when I shop.” The fruits and veggies aren’t the only reason Anthony likes to visit the Blue Spruce pantry in Fort Collins. “I love Deb, the woman who gives out food to seniors. She is nicest person in the world. She is so helpful and always has a smile on her face.”
Learn more about Wyoming Food Bank of the Rockies…
- In a state with only 20 McDonalds, 15 Starbucks and 11 Walmart’s, Wyoming Food Bank of the Rockies works to secure nutritious foods for 71,000 food insecure residents - 23,900 of whom are children.
- 50% of all the food distributed through Wyoming Food Bank of the Rockies goes directly to feed children; 15% feeds seniors/veterans.
A few more facts about the Food Bank of the Rockies during the COVID-19 crisis, as it addresses need on Western Slope…
- Food Bank of the Rockies expects to serve 8,400 individuals needing food assistance during COVID-19, as mountain and Western Slope communities have been particularly impacted.
- Their efforts will include (1) increased distribution through traditional hunger-relief agencies, and (2) their mobile pantry program, which typically operates three times per month, will increase to two times a week, creating eight distributions per month.