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LDS Church to donate 42,000 pounds of food to local food bank

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Bishop’s Storehouse in Salt Lake City where the delivery of 42,000 pounds of food to Idaho Falls will come from. | Courtesy The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

IDAHO FALLS — The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints announced a donation of 42,000 pounds of food to Community Food Basket in Idaho Falls Thursday.

Community Food Basket officials that since the pandemic began they’ve seen an increase need from members of the community. In March, the Community Food Basket reports helping feed 359 local families who’ve never reached out for their help before.

In response to the increased demand, the Church announced they are sending the truck of 24 pallets of food on Tuesday, according to a news release.

“We’re running short given the trajectory of need,” Community Food Basket Executive Director Dave Manson tells EastIdahoNews.com. “The infusion of food that’s coming from the Bishop’s Storehouse is going to have a significant impact in terms of stretching our inventory and giving us the ability to continue to meet the need in the month or two months that is coming.”

The food will come from the Church’s 570,391-square-foot welfare facility in Salt Lake City, the Bishop’s Storehouse. Holding over 65,000 pallets of food, the Church says they are prepared to respond to disasters and take care of others regardless of religion.

Tuesday’s delivery includes items like beef stew, flour and canned fruits and vegetables. The Community Food Basket will handle the distribution of food to those in need. Prior to the COVID-19 pandemic the food bank served about 4,000 people a month.

“The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints appreciates The Food Basket and the work they, and other community partners, do to organize and disseminate critical supplies to those in greatest need,” says Doug Nelson, a local spokesman for the Church, in a news release. “The Church appreciates the diversity of the many organizations and people who join together to provide assistance in times of emergency.”

Manson says they don’t know how long the crisis will last so they are planning for the number of needy individuals to grow. Community Food Basket says anyone willing to help is welcome.

“The biggest need we have right now is financial support,” Manson says. “We’re not able at this time to accept food donations from people’s pantries and so forth simply because we don’t know the prominence of where this food is coming from.”

Those funds are used to allow the Community Food Basket to purchase the items from suppliers to support those in need over the coming months.

“We don’t want to turn down anybody,” Manson said. “Anybody in our community that finds themselves in need of food to make it over a hump, a crisis, an emergency lack of funds, please please please come see us.”

Community Food Basket-Idaho Falls is open Monday through Friday from 4 to 5 p.m. at 245 North Placer Avenue. They currently operate a drive-through method where people stay in their vehicles and volunteers load the food into cars.

“We’re trying to do the best thing possible in terms of being responsible to prevent the spread of the virus but we still want to be able to serve food,” Manson said.

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