In response to COVID-19, Governor John Bel Edwards issued a Stay at Home Order on March 22, 2020 directing all Louisiana residents to shelter at home and limit movements outside their homes beyond essential needs. However, it is important to note the Greater Baton Rouge Food Bank’s staff and volunteers provide an essential service to feed the food insecure in our 11-parish service area.
We are asking for volunteers to help us sustain our regular operations as well as the increased demand for food services. The Food Bank, along with our 100+ member agencies, provides essential services each day to some of the most vulnerable people in our community: seniors, children and low-income families struggling to make ends meet. In addition to those we currently serve, we have had an influx of clients that have never needed our services before. In response to COVID-19, many businesses have had to close their doors and now their employees need food assistance.
In 2019, our volunteers completed the work of 17 full-time employees. As the Food Bank is being called upon to ensure that our most vulnerable neighbors have access to the food they need, we cannot provide these vital services without our volunteers.
To ensure the safety of our volunteers, staff and the community we serve, we have increased cleaning and sanitizing of our facility. Volunteers are separated into groups of 10 or less. Volunteers must remain at least six feet apart from one another at all times and wear gloves while participating in volunteer activities. We are following all safety regulations provided by the CDC, local and state health agencies.
To ensure the safety of our volunteers, staff and the community we serve during this difficult time, we have placed some additional restrictions on volunteers. You will be asked not to volunteer if you answer yes to any of the below questions:
- Have you been in Orleans Parish or Jefferson Parish in the past two weeks?
- 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?
If none of the above apply and you are able to volunteer with us please visit volunteer.brfoodbank.org/calendar to find an opportunity to help us feed those in need. 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.