Many Valley families using food banks to make ends meet

Food bank shelf

PHOENIX (3TV/CBS 5) -- The coronavirus outbreak is affecting Maricopa County in unprecedented ways. Families are experiencing lapses in income, childcare, and food resulting in a time of increased need and decreased resources for many Valley charities.

Local nonprofits are all feeling the economic impact of COVID-19 at the same time; so much that requests for help are at record highs. Below is a list of ways you can help.

Albertsons and Safeway host 'Neighbors-Helping-Neighbors' food drive

Arizona’s Family, Albertsons and Safeway want to help alleviate that need with the Neighbors-Helping-Neighbors food drive. Starting April 1, Albertsons and Safeway will collect monetary donations via the register pin pad. These donations will benefit nonprofits that provide food to Arizonans in need. Donations will help stock food pantries, fill food boxes and provide meals to the state’s most vulnerable friends and neighbors. The grocery chain will also be accepting online donations from April 1 through April 30. If you can, please consider making a donation.

Phoenix Rescue Mission

Phoenix Rescue Mission's Hope for Hunger Food Bank is in desperate need of food supplies and is asking for donations. The Hope for Hunger Food Bank says it had to turn people away after serving double the regular number of households last week. Click here for the Mission's wish list.

Phoenix Rescue Mission is also asking for cash donations, which you can make online here. To donate items in-person, go to their donation warehouse at 35th Avenue and Thomas Road between 7:30 a.m. and 3:30 p.m. Monday through Friday.

St. Vincent de Paul

St. Vincent de Paul is asking for specific donations. They modified their services so they can continue to provide critical resources in responsible ways. They need volunteers, monetary donations, non-perishable food donations, underwear, and socks. The needs continue to evolve as do the volunteer procedures. More information can be found here.

HonorHealth Desert Mission Food Bank

Regular volunteers are scarce right now primarily because most volunteers are elderly and most vulnerable right now. Additionally, corporate and school partners are all practicing social distancing and limiting offsite activities.

Having an adequate number of volunteers is essential to operations running smoothly. Of course, another critical need is food. Donations are on a steady decline with less food available through grocery rescue programs and community members being less likely to part with food at this uncertain time.

HonorHealth is also in need of monetary support in place of donated food they are not receiving. To make a donation, please visit

“We are deeply grateful to the community for their care and concern for food banks, healthcare systems, and other organizations who continue to keep our doors open during this time,” said Jennifer Kabrud, Corporate Engagement Manager, Desert Mission.

Valley of the Sun United Way

Valley of the Sun United Way has launched the United for the Valley COVID-19 Fund. This fund offers support for Maricopa County families and individuals impacted by the coronavirus. This includes lapses in food, income, childcare, and more.

Valley of the Sun United Way is working with local foundations, businesses, media organizations and others to create the new ‘United for the Valley COVID-19 Fund’, which its local health and human services and education nonprofits, and school partners, will be able to utilize to address the county’s most pressing needs.

“We partner with nonprofits and schools to identify the most pressing needs, then mobilize the caring power of our community to meet those needs,” said Valley of the Sun United Way President and CEO Carla Vargas Jasa. “Today, our community needs resources that are available quickly and can be nimble to meet the fast-changing environment that many of Maricopa County’s health and human service and education organizations are facing right now.”

To contribute to the Arizona Community Foundation, visit: or text UnitedFund to 51555

Mesa United Way

Mesa United Way has also launched a fund specific to needs in that community and is collaborating with the ‘United for the Valley COVID-19 Fund’ to ensure a community-wide response. If you live in Mesa and would like to donate to that fund, visit

Kitchen on the Street

Many schools have pick-up options for breakfast/lunch. is working to coordinate the distribution of weekend ‘Bags on Fridays’ to students enrolled in the program. But there have been many additional requests for family assistance.

You can help by donating food or funds online through the virtual food drive. Kitchen on the Street is a qualifying charity for the Charitable Tax Credit.


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