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Feeding Tampa Bay getting creative in distributing food during COVID-19 pandemic

They say need jumped 400% in the last month
Feeding Tampa Bay Masks and Gloves
Posted at 5:12 AM, Apr 09, 2020
and last updated 2020-04-09 07:59:57-04

TAMPA, Fla. -- Feeding Tampa Bay is getting creative and doing more with less to get food to people during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The non-profit says people losing their jobs has caused adramatic spike in need. The CEO says they've seen a nearly 400% increase in families needing food over the past four weeks.

"That's a staggering amount of folks that wouldn't normally be in our system that have come into our world and said hey, I need help," said Thomas Mantz, CEO and President of Feeding Tampa Bay.

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The organization is going to donors and asking for cash because, for the first time, they may have to buy food.

"We started something really exciting and new," Mantz said. "We're working with several restaurants, and they're creating meals for us now and distributing back into the community."

They are also partnering with food delivery apps to ensure homebound seniors have access to meals when they can't leave due to social distancing.


"We're partnering with UberEats, and they're delivering food to some of these seniors," Mantz said. "It's just a terrific way for us to all come together and respond."

The increase in need comes as the organization has opened up 25 mobile distribution centers to ensure families have access to food during the pandemic.

Find the mobile food pantry schedule here.

They also just announced several new grocery distribution centers.