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Volunteers Needed for No-Contact Food Pantry Distribution

Covington's largest food pantry immediately needs "able bodies" to help it put that food in the hands, or cars, of those who desperately need it during the COVID-19 global pandemic.

Be Concerned: The People's Pantry is putting to work a no-contact car-hop-style distribution method to limit contact between volunteers and clients at its locations in Covington and Erlanger.

To volunteer, the only ability needed is to wheel a shopping cart through a parking lot and to load bags and boxes of food into a car.

In March, the agency served 1,520 families, a record, it said.

"We're just worn out and we need help," Executive Director Andy Brunsman said. "I know there are a lot of generous people out there who are looking for a place they can make a difference while not jeopardizing their own health, and here's a way."

Anybody who wants to volunteer should send an email to [email protected].

Be Concerned distributes food during four time slots: 

  • Noon-3 p.m. Mondays-Fridays at its United Ministries location 525 Graves Ave. in Erlanger.
  • 3:30 p.m.-6 p.m. Tuesdays at its main location at 1100 Pike St. in Covington.
  • 9:30 a.m.-noon Wednesdays, Thursdays and Fridays in Covington.
  • 1 p.m.-3 p.m. Mondays-Fridays in Covington as part of its emergency assistance program. 

Be Concerned especially needs volunteers during the first three time slots, Brunsman said.

With the "car-hop style" of distribution, clients stay in their vehicles. Brunsman or another staffer hands them a "menu" of food items, and - after it's filled out - he delivers the list to the pantry.

"Inside" volunteers fill the order and put the food into a shopping cart, and "outside" volunteers wheel the cart to the car and load the food into the vehicle. Those are the volunteers that are needed, he said.

He noted that volunteers would not be interacting with clients and would be "socially distanced" from everybody.

"Our slogan has always been 'do more, for more, with more' - but we need help doing that," Brunsman said. "People shouldn't have to worry about where their next meal comes from."

He said that Be Concerned may also soon need drivers and others who can use their vehicles to deliver large quantities to other agencies and/or individuals.

Donations

To donate to Be Concerned, you can go online here; mail a check to 1100 Pike St., Covington, KY 41011; or order from its Amazon wish list here.

-Staff report