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Following Hurricane Irene and Tropical Storm Lee, food banks in the Northeast saw even greater demands for their help.
Throughout the four-county region in Pennsylvania served by the CEO/Weinberg Northeast Regional Food Bank, approximately 6,500 homes and several hundred businesses sustained flood damage in the aftermath of storms and more than 120,000 residents were evacuated from their homes. Many small, economically distressed communities lining the Susquehanna River in northeast PA are home to a population that is older and poorer than state or national averages. These communities were extremely hard hit by the flooding.
The staff and volunteers of the Weinberg Food Bank prepared more than 1,000 meals daily for nine emergency shelters; provided beverages, meals and snacks for first responders, police and fire departments, National Guard and emergency shelter volunteers; and organized deliveries of locally-donated paper products, personal health and hygiene items, and household cleaning supplies to help those returning to flood-damaged homes.
Even after the flood waters have receded, the food bank’s Community Kitchen still received higher than normal demands for prepared meals, since hundreds of households were without electric and gas utilities for cooking
The Weinberg Food Bank currently is working to restock the refrigerators, freezers and kitchen pantries of households in the affected areas as well as increase the frequency of mobile pantries to serve residents still struggling with the aftermath of the floods.
In September, GreaterGood.org selected the Weinberg Food Bank as one of the recipients of grants to assist the victims of Hurricane Irene. This grant was made possible the Gifts That Give More [tm] program at The Hunger Site.