On January 16, First 5 San Francisco and Family Resource Center (FRC) staff and parents advocated for a $500,000 allocation from the City’s Sugary Drinks Distributor Tax to support FRC food pantries. At a meeting of the tax’s advisory committee, FRC stakeholders provided compelling testimony about how important FRC food pantries were to their communities, fulfilling a vital need for healthy food within the context of supportive programs and services for children and families.
FRCs distribute more than 1,400 bags of healthy food every week and nearly 64,000 bags a year to needy families, but these food distribution efforts are not funded through the grants they receive from the City. FRCs must instead scrape to assemble the staff and resources needed to package and hand out food that arrives on pallets each week.
One parent from Felton Institute’s Young Family Resource Center shared, “The food pantry helps me get food. It’s important because rent is expensive now. We can get fresh vegetables and food. It allows me to save money for my other needs for my family.”
FRCs are trusted community members who can address fears families may have in accessing a food resource. These efforts are more critical with the impact of the federal government shut down on food stamps and public charge impacts on immigration determinations.