A Tale of Two Years
When we look back at this past fiscal year (July 2019 - June 2020), it almost seems like a tale of two years: life before COVID-19, and our current reality of living and operating in the midst of the pandemic.
Prior to March 2020, the DMARC Food Pantry Network was seeing some of the highest rates of food pantry use that we've ever seen in our 40+ year history. And in the months since March, while we've seen a dip in some of our food pantry "regulars" (some of the possible reasons you'll learn about below), we have seen a large increase in the number of people using a DMARC food pantry for the first time ever, especially at mobile food pantry locations.
We've had to adapt our food pantry distribution model to prioritize the safety of our food pantry visitors, volunteers, and staff, but we've also gotten creative with new partnerships and possibilities, including distributing USDA produce boxes and creating a no-contact food pantry delivery service.
The outpouring of support we have received from the community has been nothing short of awe-inspiring. So many of you have stepped up to help, whether it be through a monetary donation, volunteering time at a mobile food pantry or delivering food, or hosting a virtual drive to rally your community to support DMARC. We truly cannot thank you enough. And we could not do the work we do without the help of our 14 partner food pantries, mobile food pantry host locations, and numerous other community partners such as Food Bank of Iowa and Eat Greater Des Moines.
We do not know what the next year may hold for us, but we know with your support, together we will continue to meet the basic human needs of our community and advocate for a more equitable society. Thank you.