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Coronavirus (COVID-19) Update

Tuesday March 17, 2020

Updated 11/18/2020

Masks are now required to enter the Greater Baton Rouge Food Bank for all persons over the age of 2. Per Mayor-President Broome’s Executive Order, “all persons over the age of 2 must wear some form of covering that fits snugly over their nose and mouth, such as a commercially made or homemade fabric mask, scarf, bandana or handkerchief, at all times while inside all commercial and nonprofit entities in the City-Parish providing goods or services directly to the public.” 

At the Greater Baton Rouge Food Bank, there is no higher priority than the safety of our volunteers, staff and the community we serve. The Greater Baton Rouge Food Bank is actively monitoring developments related to COVID-19 (coronavirus). Keeping a clean facility and following best practices for food safety are part of our everyday procedures. Due to COVID-19, we are taking extra precautions, including increased cleaning and sanitizing of our facility. We are following the guidance of the CDC, local and state health agencies. Feeding America is also offering guidance specific to food banks.

It is incredibly important that we continue food distribution during this time. Many of the families that we serve live paycheck to paycheck, and this current challenge is going to be incredibly difficult for them. To view a list of distributions for the current week please click here.

In response to the current situation, many of our agencies have closed due to the safety of their volunteers. Seniors operate a majority of our agencies and are the most at-risk age group of potentially catching the virus. In order to fill the void of those who depend on these agencies, we have created special mobile food distributions in those areas.

Additionally, many businesses have closed in accordance with the current stay at home order, resulting in furloughs. We have created special distributions to help those in need during this time that have previously never needed our assistance but are now facing food insecurity due to a loss of income.

Here’s how the community can help:

More people are facing hunger. Make sure your neighbors know they are not alone. With schools and workplaces closed, more and more people in our communities will turn to the Greater Baton Rouge Food Bank for assistance. With your support we can continue to meet the needs of current clients, while also addressing the increasing need as jobs are impacted. You can act now to help make sure no one goes hungry during this uncertain time.

DONATE: $1 could help provide 3 meals. The impact of this pandemic is going to be felt by so many of our neighbors – especially our seniors, children, and low-income families. Click HERE to make a secure online monetary donation to help support our emergency response and readiness. Call 225-359-9940 to make your gift over the phone.

  • PLEASE NOTE: The Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act lets taxpayers deduct up to $300 in charitable donations from their taxable income for charitable contributions made in 2020. This is an above the line deduction, meaning you do not have to itemize to claim. Taxpayers will be able to claim the deductions on their tax forms next year. As always, please consult your personal tax professional.

VOLUNTEER: We need volunteers to continue to meet the community’s need at this time. We have resumed our normal operations allowing 50 volunteers per shift and those who have adhered to social distancing and stay at home guidelines. Volunteers ages 10-15 must be accompanied by and adult; For those younger than 18, our Sort and Repack opportunity is the only volunteer option available. We are committed to the well-being of our volunteers, staff and clients; therefore, we ask that you please consider staying home if you are high risk. Volunteers are asked to bring and wear masks when they volunteer. If you do not have a mask, please contact our Volunteer Coordinator at 225-359-9940. Please click HERE to sign up to volunteer.

Volunteers will also be asked not to volunteer if you answer yes to any of the below questions:

  • Are you experiencing flu-like symptoms? (defined by coughing, fever, respiratory symptoms or stomach virus symptoms or have had these symptoms recently)
  • Have you been in contact with anyone who is COVID-19 symptomatic or has been diagnosed with the COVID-19 virus?
  • Have you traveled outside of the United States within the past 14 days?
  • Have you knowingly had contact with a traveler who recently traveled outside of the United States within the past 14 days, or a person who was experiencing flu like symptoms within the past 14 days?

TAKE CARE OF YOURSELF: The safety and well-being of our clients, partners, volunteers and staff is our top priority. Please continue to follow the guidance of public health officials. Please click HERE to visit the website for more information.

We are in ongoing communications with our partners, staff and volunteers to maintain safe practices that will ensure nutritious food continues to be distributed throughout our 11-parish service area.

We will continue to keep our community updated through this website, the media and social media channels should any developments or changes occur in our operations or those of our partners.

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