AUBURN, Maine (WABI) - A $1 million dollar grant from the Harold Alfond Foundation is on its way to the Good Shepherd Food Bank to help combat hunger in Maine.
Earlier this week, the food bank said $6.3 million in additional funding was needed over a six month period to meet the needs of struggling Mainers.
That represents a 150% increase to what it typically takes to run the food bank for half a year.
The COVID-19 crisis has resulted in rising unemployment, and Good Shepherd estimates a 39% increase in Mainers facing food insecurity. To compound the problem, there's less availability of shelf-stable food as people stock up their personal pantries. This contributes to a drop in donations to food banks, and an increased cost as agencies try to seek out these staples at wholesale prices.
“The grant from the Harold Alfond Foundation comes at a perfect time, and we are so grateful for the Foundation’s foresight and generosity,” says Good Shepherd Food Bank President Kristen Miale. “One hundred percent of this funding will be deployed across the state in the form of food and funds for our partner hunger-relief agencies.”