Inslee, local nonprofits launch statewide food relief fund

Washington

The "WA Food Fund" will focus on helping Washington residents

PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — At a time when Washington food banks are seeing double the amount of people they usually do, supplies are getting dangerously low.

To combat that waning food supply in the midst of the coronavirus pandemic, Governor Jay Inslee is partnering with local nonprofits and philanthropies to establish a statewide food relief fund. It will be called the WA Food Fund and will be managed by Philanthropy Northwest. According to a statement released by Inslee on Tuesday, the fund will combine money from businesses and philanthropies along with individual fundraising.

“Washingtonians are generous neighbors who rise to the occasion, and this is a moment for individuals to make a difference,” Inslee said. “By coming together and contributing to this fund, we can meet this demand across the state and help our neighbors and their families put a meal on the table.”

In Clark County, alone, the demand for food has gone up about 15% over the past few weeks compared to the same time period last year, according to the president of the Clark County Food Bank. The food supply is getting smaller because suppliers are facing their own new set of challenges.

Clark County Food banks ‘really need volunteers’

Officials told KOIN 6 News a few statewide projections forecast possible shortages for some food banks in the state within a couple weeks when more paychecks start drying up. According to Inslee’s press release, food donations in Washington are estimated to be down about 70%.

That’s where the WA Food Fund comes in.

Stated in a press release, the “WA Food Fund is focused solely on serving Washington residents and operates separately from the recently launched America’s Food Fund, which will spread its donations across the country to various organizations.”

Governor Inslee will hold a press conference on Tuesday afternoon to further discuss the state’s response to COVID-19. Watch that on-air or online at KOIN.com.

To make a contribution to the WA Food Fund, visit this website.

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