1,000 Food Boxes Given to Local Families in Need
July 21, 2020, BAKERSFIELD, Cali.—On Monday, July 20th, Advisor to the President, Ivanka Trump joined CityServe and its partners at the DC Dream Center in Washington D.C. to distribute food boxes from the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Farmers to Families Food Box Program. In partnership with the DC Dream Center and Operation Blessing, 1,000 food boxes consisting of fresh produce, milk, and meat were handed out to individuals and families who have been affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.
White House Press Secretary Kayleigh McEnany stated in her press briefing on Tuesday, July 21st, “I just wanted to highlight some — some great work being done by senior advisor Ivanka Trump. There are nearly 40 million boxes that have been put together by the Farmers to Family Food Box Program, a great partnership to help families in need in this country. And yesterday, you had Ivanka Trump visiting the D.C. Dream Center and personally distributing a number of food boxes. The distribution resulted in 1,000 boxes delivered to the D.C. community. And we thank Ivanka for the great work that she has done there.”
Since the food box program launched on May 15, 2020, the CityServe/World Vision distribution model has supplied over 2 million food boxes to their collaborative network of churches & faith-based organizations to feed individuals and families living in the “Last Mile of Need”—delivering to households with unmet food needs and insecurities. Over 1.7 million food boxes are currently committed a month to the Faith-Based Community in support of the USDA Farmers to Families Food Box Program for round two, occurring July 1 through August 31, 2020.
“We are pleased to partner with suppliers to bring meat, produce, and dairy products into the homes of the most food-insecure families in America,” said Dave Donaldson, CityServe co-founder. “Local churches have played an extraordinary role in delivering the food boxes through the “Last Mile of Need” in ways which are unique during this challenging time. But we still have more work to do as more families need help.”
Several USDA – approved suppliers have worked with the Faith-Based Community in support of Farmers to Families for what has proven to be a successful execution of relief for both families and suppliers during the COVID-19 pandemic. Suppliers who have committed food boxes to the Faith-Based Community to offer an effective and efficient strategy of delivery include GA Foods, Travel Well Holdings, Dimare, Go Fresh, Borden, among others. The food box program has been a relief to suppliers who have been affected by the COVID-19 pandemic and forced to furlough or lay off employees, cover cultivated farmland, or watch fresh produce and meats spoil. As the food box program has brought a solution that allows the surplus to meet the needs, approved suppliers have the responsibility of constructing a distribution plan and partnering with organizations to connect food boxes with people who need it.
“It is heartwarming to see the distribution of fresh nutritious foods be accomplished in the same spirit in which the food box program was designed,” said Desiree Rodriguez, owner of Travel Well Holdings, a USDA-approved supplier for the Farmers to Families Food Box Program. “We are committed to bringing relief to families who have been affected during this season and it is why we are so grateful for the collaborative effort we have with CityServe.”
CityServe/World Vision Distribution Model
USDA-approved suppliers deliver food boxes to warehouse distribution centers known as HUBs who receive, store, and distribute food boxes to church PODs (point of distribution). CityServe PODs hand out or deliver food boxes to the most vulnerable in their neighborhoods.
CityServe, in partnership with World Vision USA, is facilitating the Faith-Based Community in support of Farmers to Families which also includes Convoy of Hope, Operation Blessing, Citygate Network, The Dream Center Network, Teen Challenge, Mercy Chefs, God’s Pit Crew, Victory Churches, and other faith-based organizations. Food box commitments to the Faith-Based Community continue to increase weekly as the HUB & POD distribution model proves effective in reaching those most vulnerable to food insecurity.
On June 23rd, the USDA announced the Farmers to Families Food Box Program had reached 20 million food boxes distributed. “Over the past few weeks, the Farmers to Families Food Box Program has continued to pick up steam, getting food in the hands of more and more Americans while providing much needed support to our agricultural sector,” said Secretary Perdue. “This milestone is a testament that the program is accomplishing what we intended—supporting U.S. farmers and distributors and getting food to those who need it most. It’s a real trifecta, which is why we call it a win-win-win.”
CityServe is a collaborative network of churches and community leaders connected to help those in need to live better lives. CityServe empowers the local church to fulfill its purpose to overcome despair and transform lives by resourcing them with tangible goods and capacity building. CityServe brings the church to the table to address community challenges by offering long-lasting relationships that lead to transformation and has been designated a “Community of Faith and Opportunity” by the U.S. Department of Agriculture. For more information about CityServe and its initiatives, please visit https://cityserve.us or on social platforms @cityservehq.
About World Vision
World Vision is a Christian humanitarian organization conducting relief, development, and advocacy activities in its work with children, families, and their communities in nearly 100 countries to help them reach their full potential by tackling the causes of poverty and injustice. World Vision serves all people regardless of religion, race, ethnicity, or gender. For more information, please visit www.WorldVision.org/media-center/ or on Twitter @WorldVisionUSA.
About USDA Farmers to Families Food Box Program
On April 17, 2020, the USDA announced the program as part of the Coronavirus Food Assistance Program developed to help farmers, ranchers, and consumers in response to the COVID-19 national emergency. The USDA has approved contracts to suppliers for meat, produce, and dairy packaging and distribution to food banks, nonprofit and faith-based organizations. The first round of purchases totaling up to $1.2 billion occurred from May 15 through June 30, 2020. The second round, July 1 through August 31, 2020, has produced $4.3 million in invoiced food boxes to date.
Additional information on the Farmers to Families Food Box Program, including webinars and FAQs, is available at https://www.ams.usda.gov/selling-food.