In partnership with Adventist Community Services (ACS) of the North American Division (NAD), the Adventist Development and Relief Agency (ADRA), the global humanitarian arm of the Seventh-day Adventist Church, has provided funding to expand the services of more than 200 Adventist food pantries across the U.S.
This three-month, US$150,000 project will help meet the increasing demand for food essentials from families and individuals who have been hit the hardest by massive layoffs caused by the coronavirus pandemic, and people who have been left homeless. Food relief operations will take place at ACS-owned food pantries and focus on communities that have been left vulnerable.
ADRA is allocating this food assistance through ACS to 25 operating food pantries across the United States.
“In many communities, families are struggling to access food and other basic services to care for their families. This is causing additional stress to many people who are already facing serious challenges from the COVID-19 pandemic, including joblessness and lack of funds,” said NAD executive secretary G. Alexander Bryant. “We hope that through this initiative, our food pantries will become a refuge for families and individuals who need support but also love and hope.”
This assistance is part of a larger, $2.4 million COVID-19 aid package that includes personal protective equipment (PPE) and medical supplies, valued at $2.3 million, which will be delivered to health facilities in 10 states.
“In the midst of this health crisis, we must remember that nearly 40 million people in the U.S. are currently without a job and are doing their best to feed their families,” said ADRA president Michael Kruger. “We hope that in working with the Adventist Church, we can reach those most at risk and provide a difference in the lives of so many people.”
NAD ACS executive director Sung Kwon said that such a critical community engagement initiative was made possible through mutual collaboration between ACS and ADRA International.
“We are thankful for ‘Partnering in Mission’ with the ADRA International agency as we support the food relief efforts through the local ACS centers and their communities across the U.S.,” Kwon said.
ADRA has been responding globally to the COVID-19 pandemic in more than 70 countries, including the U.S., to help more than two million families heavily impacted by the novel coronavirus health crisis, organization leaders said. ADRA’s response teams are providing a range of humanitarian assistance that varies from country to country. This includes the distribution of hand sanitizers, food kits, cash vouchers, face masks, and hygiene training.