Finding food has been more challenging than usual for many people during the pandemic.
SLO Food Bank reports hunger is up by 154% in the community and isn't expected to drop anytime soon.
“Food insecurity, aka hunger, has absolutely exploded in our county following the pandemic," SLO Food Bank CEO Garret Olson said.
The new shutdown order in place could worsen the hunger problem for food banks in both San Luis Obispo and Santa Barbara counties.
Santa Barbara County Food Bank Senior Development Manager, Laurel Alcantar, says they anticipate to see an increased need due to the new lock-down.
Since the stay-at-home order began in March, the Santa Barbara County Food Bank has seen a steady double in the amount of food distributed.
“Right now our inventory is solid, so we are able to respond in an effective way to the increased need that we anticipate in the community," Alcantar said.
The Salvation Army in San Luis Obispo has already seen bags of toys rolling in, and they are grateful to those who can give back this year.
“Some people though can’t give this year so for those that can we thank you for giving more. And if you are one of those that can give more, we ask you to please reach down deep into your heart and try to give more this year," Salvation Army Captain Elaine Mansoor said.
The Salvation Army partnered with the SLO Food Bank this year to help intake household scale donations, as the SLO Food Bank warehouse has been busy packaging food while keeping volunteers socially distanced.
Donations to the San Luis Obispo Food Bank can be made here.
To donate to the Santa Barbara Food Bank, click here.