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Food banks in the Triangle see record high numbers during COVID-19 pandemic

Food banks across the triangle remain open and are seeing unprecedented numbers of people during the pandemic.

Posted Updated

Kasey Cunningham
, WRAL reporter & Maggie Brown, Multiplatform producer

Food banks across the Triangle remain open and are seeing unprecedented numbers of people during the pandemic.

The demand for meals at the Food Bank of Eastern NC has tripled -- the organization is now seeing 350 people a week. And some of their partners are reporting a 100% increase in number of people served, according to a spokesperson from Food Bank of Eastern NC.
The Inter-Faith Food Shuttle served 193,000 individuals in March and sent out around 1,000 emergency food items each week.

"There are obviously a lot of people in need right now and we’re doing everything we can to address those needs," Laura Rice, a spokesperson for the Inter-Faith Food Shuttle, said.

Rice predicts these numbers will be even higher moving forward.

Most of the people being served are "new to being in need," a spokesperson from the Food Bank of Eastern NC said.

Catholic Charities of the Diocese of Raleigh, a community food pantry, said they are seeing a whole new population of people asking for help.

"We have seen a significant increase in new clients who are coming to our food pantries and telling us they are coming to a food pantry for the first time in their life," Director of Communications and Disaster Services at Catholic Charities Raleigh Daniel Altenau said.

Food banks rely heavily on volunteers and donations.

Inter-Faith said the most needed items are:

  • Canned vegetables
  • Canned fruit
  • Rice
  • Pasta and noodles
  • Pasta sauce
  • Cereal boxes
  • Oatmeal
  • Canned soup
  • Canned chicken and tuna
  • Canned and dry beans

For more information on how to volunteer or donate:


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