NEWARK, CA – If you look around Alameda County you can easily see the impact the coronavirus has had on the way we live. What is less noticeable is the number of people who are now worried about having enough to eat.
According to Feeding America, the country’s largest famine relief organization, coronavirus-related economic crises could increase the number of Americans with unsafe food to 54 million by the end of the year. That’s 17 million more Americans than those who were food unsafe before the pandemic. For some, eating a lot of pasta and rice dishes in boxes is a matter of lack of money before the week runs out.
For others, food insecurity means real hunger.
In Alameda County, around 150,140 residents – 9.1 percent – were considered food unsafe prior to the pandemic, according to Feeding America’s interactive Map the Meal Gap study.
Job losses and other coronavirus-related economic crises could increase the food insecurity rate in Alameda County to 13.9 percent by the end of the year.
Feeding America, of which the Alameda County Community Food Bank is one of the 200 member banks, reports both higher demand for services and higher needs for volunteer and donor support.
Here are the food resources in Alameda County:
- Alameda: Alameda Food Bank, 650 W. Ranger Rd., Alameda CA 94501
- Berkeley: Berkeley Food Pantry, 1600 Sacramento St., Berkeley, CA 94702
- Berkeley: The Roadside Church, 2108 Russell St., Berkeley CA 94705
- Castro Valley: Resurrection Greek Orthodox Church – Pantry, 20104 Center St., Castro Valley CA 94546
- Cherryland: Eden United Church / Essen for Cherryland, 21455 Birch St., Hayward CA 94541
- Dublin: Open-Hearted Kitchen – Soup Kitchen, 7500 St. Patrick Way, Dublin, CA 94568
- Fremont: Tri-City Volunteers, 37350 Joseph St., Fremont CA 94536
- Hayward: Hope for the Heart, 22035 Meekland Ave., Hayward CA 94544
- Hayward: South Hayward Parish, 27287 Patrick Ave., Hayward CA 94544
- Livermore: Las Positas College – Pantry, 3000 Campus Hill Dr., Livermore CA 94551
- Livermore: Open Heart Kitchen from Livermore, 678 Enos Way, Livermore CA 94551
- Livermore: Kitchen with an Open Heart – Vineyard Christian Fellowship, 460 N. Livermore Ave., Livermore CA 94551
- Livermore: Tri-Valley Haven Pantry, 418 Junction Ave., Livermore CA 94550
- Newark: Viola Blythe Community Center, 37365 Ash St., Newark CA 94560
- Oakland: City Team Departments, 722 Washington Ave., Oakland CA 94607
- Oakland: ECAP / Community Action Program for All, 3610 San Pablo Ave., Oakland CA 94608
- Oakland: Fremont High School – Mobile Pantry (MoPa), 4529 Foothill Blvd., Oakland CA 94601
- Oakland: Harbor House Ministries, 1111 11th Ave., Oakland approx. 94606
- Oakland: Lake Merritt United Methodist Church, 1330 Lakeshore Ave., Oakland CA 94606
- Oakland: Final Stage Bread and Fish Food Program, 1060 32nd St., Oakland CA 94608
- Oakland: Oakport Drive-Thru Pantry, 7195 Oakport St., Oakland, CA 94621
- Oakland: Prescott Joseph Center, 920 Peralta St., Oakland, CA 94607
- Oakland: St. Augustine’s Episcopal Church 525 29. StOakland CA 94609
- Oakland: St. James Episcopal Church / Iglesia de Santiago, 1540 12th Ave., Oakland CA 94606
- Oakland: St. Lawrence O’Toole, 3725 High St., Oakland CA 94619
- Oakland: Taylor Memorial Church, 1188 12th St., Oakland CA 94607
- Oakland: Telegraph Community Center, 5316 Telegraph Ave., Oakland, CA 94609
- Pleasanton: Alameda County Fairgrounds transit pantry, 4501 Pleasnton Ave., Gate 8, Pleasanton CA 94566
- Pleasanton: Open Heart Kitchen, 1225 Hopyard Blvd., Pleasanton, CA 94566
- Pleasanton: Open-Hearted Kitchen – Soup Kitchen, 4444 Black Ave., Pleasanton CA 94566
- San Leandro: Ashland Village – Mobile Pantry, 1300 Kentwood Lane, San Leandro CA 94578
- San Lorenzo: Church of the Intercession of the Prophetic Teacher, 16490 Kent Ave., San Lorenzo CA 94580
- Union City: Los Robles Apartments, 32300 Almaden Boulevard, Union City, CA 94587
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Food insecurity is often viewed as a “poor people problem”, but not all people living in poverty are food insecure, and not all people living in poverty live in poverty. Food insecurity is a complex issue that is linked to other systemic challenges, including poverty, low wages, affordable housing, chronic and acute health problems, high medical costs and social isolation.
“Our members report that many of the people they serve have never asked for food aid before,” Kathryn Strickland, Feeding America’s chief network officer, told Patch. “Some people report that people who used to donate to food banks are now seeking help.”
Patch has partnered with Feeding America to help raise awareness of the millions of Americans who are starving. Feeding America, which supports 200 food banks across the country, estimates that by 2020 more than 54 million Americans will not have enough nutritious foods to eat due to the effects of the coronavirus pandemic. This is a social patch project. Feeding America receives 100 percent of donations. Find out how to donate in your community or find a pantry near you.