HARRISBURG, Pa. (WHTM) — Pennslyvania food banks will get $11.4 million from part of the state’s allocated funds from the federal American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) for cold storage and transportation resources.
The grant money will be used to purchase the equipment necessary to ensure that the high volume of perishable food items now can be accessed more readily, stored properly, and delivered safely to families in all 67 counties of the Commonwealth.
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“The stronger our infrastructure network is, the more effective the food distribution network is, and that means more individuals and families having access to healthy, nutritious meals,” Hunger-Free Pennsylvania Executive Director Sheila Christopher said.
The COVID-19 pandemic created a dramatic increase in demand on Pennsylvania’s emergency food assistance network, Even though this grant will help food banks, the challenges they face operationally to meet the demand is still present.
“The charitable food network is beyond grateful for this investment in our food banks and our partner agencies like Mary’s Shelter to increase our capacity to store and transport fresh and frozen food. We are grateful to the Wolf administration and Democratic leadership for recognizing this critical need that will support so many food-insecure Pennsylvanians,” Feeding Pennsylvania Chief Executive Officer Jane Clements said.
With this grant, the network of food banks will be able to purchase things such as drive-in coolers and freezers, one and two-door commercial coolers and freezers, sea box containers, and several vehicles.
Some of the food banks that will be getting part of the grant in our area are the Central Pennsylvania Food Bank which is receiving $2.5 million and the York County Food Bank, which is receiving $150,000.
The state’s network of food banks serves approximately 3,000 charitable food assistance providers throughout the commonwealth.