Stepping up: Sonoma County nonprofits find ways to feed the needy during pandemic

in People

It’s almost as if Food For Thought was made for this pandemic. The Forestville-based food bank specializes in delivering groceries, and in some cases fully prepared meals, to the homes of people dealing with illnesses.

In fact, the agency was brought into existence three decades ago, by a different virus. Food For Thought was born in the late 1980s, when residents of the Russian River valley began collecting food and raising money for their neighbors with HIV, the virus that causes AIDS. It has since expanded its mission, serving those suffering from a variety of illnesses. By 2020, it was serving 850 clients per week. Then the coronavirus hit.

To meet an immediate need for food in the community, executive director Ron Karp recalled, Food For Thought doubled its deliveries. In mid-May, working with the county’s public health department, it unveiled a new program catering specifically to coronavirus patients and their families, who were struggling to get food while in isolation. Since then, the agency’s COVID-19 nutrition program has served over 1,000 people.

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