Community Feeding Task Force Builds Momentum

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Provided by Prince William County

The Community Feeding Task Force continues to coordinate food distribution during the COVID-19 pandemic. The task force is refining its capabilities and expanding the reach to residents. The task force is a partnership between Prince William County, Action in Community Through Service (ACTS), the Cities of Manassas and Manassas Park, and the Prince William County Community Foundation.

A Hub-and-Spoke Model

The task force is set up on a hub-and-spoke model, which is a warehouse that stores food to reach people in need.  The warehouse, at 8621 Breeden Avenue in Manassas, is the central hub. The task force provides food to 43 charities and other partners across the county serving as distribution sites. In April, the task force distributed over 200,000 pounds of food.  The demand for the task force has increased with the number of people out of work constantly growing. Distribution locations are serving nearly 5,000 people every week.

Aaron Tolson is ACTS Development Director. Tolson said, “It’s going through the roof. We’re having a hard time securing food. This is our biggest issue right now. Ordering trucks full of food is anywhere from four weeks to 10 weeks turnaround time. I think the demand has gone up nationwide, and the resources are taken quickly.”

Sysco Virginia has provided three refrigerated trailers with food donations and U.S. Foods has provided weekly donations. Some of the main spokes include ACTS, SERVE, House of Mercy, Holy Family, Manassas Park Community Center, Grace Life Community Church, Park Valley Church, Dar Alnoor, The House Student Leadership Center, and St. Thomas UMC.  Here is a map of the distribution locations.

Items Needed

Residents willing to donate can drop off items at the warehouse or the nearest food pantry location. Here is a list of items needed:

  • Canned vegetables
  • Canned fruit
  • Canned meats
  • Canned sauce
  • Canned soup
  • Rice
  • Dried beans
  • Pasta
  • Peanut butter
  • Jelly
  • Honey
  • Cooking oil
  • Cereal
  • Oatmeal
  • Produce (canned or fresh)
  • Meat (canned or fresh)
  • Bread
  • Fruit

For more information about the county’s response to COVID-19, visit pwcgov.org/COVID19.

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