VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. (WAVY) — From 8 a.m. until noon Tuesday morning, volunteers worked in the blazing sun to load box after box into a line of cars.
Tuesday’s drive-thru food bank at the Virginia Beach Amphitheater was the fourth of its kind. Since December, the Virginia Beach Department of Human Services and the Foodbank of Southeastern Virginia and the Eastern Shore have teamed up to host an event every other month.
“Love to say that this would be our last one, that the need is ending, but unfortunately that is not what we’re seeing at the food bank,” explained Emma Inman, a vice president for the Southeastern Foodbank of Southeastern Virginia and the Eastern Shore.
During Tuesday’s event, they gave boxes of fresh produce, fresh meat. dairy and shelf-stable foods like cereal to 1,717 households.
It was the most of all four events. April’s drive-thru food bank assisted 1,453 households, 1,500 were helped during February, and December saw 750 households assisted. Officials couldn’t confirm if the higher numbers indicated more need or were a result of increased publicity. Regardless, the need still exists for many Virginia Beach families.
“We’ve got the vaccines now but that doesn’t make the economic impacts of this go away,” said Bryan Clark, the media coordinator for the Virginia Beach Department of Human Services. “We see it around us, the need, especially with this event.”
“During the past year and a half, we have seen people who have never needed charitable food assistance before suddenly finding themselves in need,” added Inman.
Officials said they will likely pause the food banks during the summer.