Food bank must raise 80% more in funds as it continues to serve 80% more people than it did pre-pandemic

Highlights:

  • Second Harvest’s annual fundraising goal is set at an unprecedented $81 million this year to help cover the monumental costs of providing food to an average of 450,000 people every month – 80% more people than it served before the pandemic
  • Need remains 80% higher than prepandemic, but donations which are critically needed to cover increased expenses have slowed in comparison to last year
  • The holidays are a critical time of fundraising that bring in a significant portion of the food bank’s operating revenue for the year
  • Donations from individuals make up more than 60% of the money raised every year
  • Individuals, corporations and organizations can help by donating at shfb.org or by calling 1-866-234-3663. Every dollar donated makes an impact – $50 helps provide enough food for 100 meals.

Two weeks into its biggest fundraising month of the year, Second Harvest of Silicon Valley is asking the community to make financial donations so it can raise the $22 million it needs in December to stay on track for its annual fundraising goal. The nonprofit set its annual goal this year at an unprecedented $81 million to help offset the increased costs of providing food to an average of 450,000 people every month – 80% more people than it served before the pandemic

“We generally raise about half our revenue during the holidays, and this year we are feeling additional pressure as financial donations have slowed,” said Leslie Bacho, CEO of Second Harvest. “While the community was incredibly generous as we ramped up our operations to meet this dramatic rise in need, we have seen a softening of monetary donations over time. Many people are experiencing some return to normalcy and may not know just how many families there are that are still in the middle of an economic crisis and will continue to need our help for years to come.”

Since the pandemic began, Second Harvest has provided about 12 million pounds of food to the community every month, which is double what it distributed before the pandemic. As a result, the food bank’s operating budget has doubled to keep up with the ongoing demand, which remains high. Second Harvest partners with over 300 nonprofit and community organizations to distribute nutritious groceries at more than 900 sites throughout Santa Clara and San Mateo counties. Second Harvest is one of only a few food banks in the nation that does not charge its partners for the food it provides them, making free groceries accessible to more people.

“If you gave last year, please give this year,” said Bacho. “It takes everyone in the community to make this work possible. Together we have the power to strengthen our community by providing the nutritious food we all need to stay healthy and engaged.”

Individuals, corporations and organizations can help by donating at shfb.org or by calling 1-866-234-3663. Every dollar donated makes an impact – $50 helps provide enough food for 100 meals.

About Second Harvest of Silicon Valley

Founded in 1974, Second Harvest of Silicon Valley is one of the largest food banks in the nation and a trusted nonprofit leader in ending local hunger. The organization distributes nutritious groceries through a network of more than 300 partners at drive-thru and walk-up sites across Santa Clara and San Mateo counties. Due to the prohibitively expensive cost of living in Silicon Valley and the economic downturn caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, Second Harvest is now serving an average of 450,000 people every month, an 80% increase over pre-pandemic levels. Second Harvest also connects people to federal nutrition programs and other food resources, and advocates for anti-hunger policies on the local, state and national levels. To learn more about how Second Harvest is responding to the incredible amount of need in Silicon Valley, visit shfb.org.

If you are covering issues related to hunger in Silicon Valley, we can provide expert spokespeople who can talk about the local landscape.

Please contact Diane Baker Hayward at dbakerhayward@shfb.org or 408-266-8866, ext. 368.

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