KING CITY — A recent donation of $5,000 was made by the Community Food Pantry of King City to the Food Bank for Monterey County, with one organization helping another in the time of public need during the Covid-19 pandemic.
“With the Food Pantry being closed due to Covid-19, we knew the Food Bank for Monterey County needed help to purchase food,” said Donna Myers, director of the pantry. “Since the Food Bank comes to feed our King City families in need, our way to help was to donate $5,000 to purchase food.”
Myers said the people of King City have been generous this year with donations, but rather than sit with the donations while the Food Pantry was closed, she decided it would be prudent to assist the organization that is giving assistance to residents with Wednesday food distributions. She explained getting the money back into the system to help families in need was what mattered.
“After 15 years, it was very difficult to close,” Myers said. “I’m so grateful that our local people are being fed.”
Weekly operations by the Food Pantry were shut down before the season began due to safety concerns caused by Covid-19, as the walk-up lines that formed would not work with social distancing.
The Food Bank, however, operates with the assistance of the National Guard and has procedures to run drive-through pickups at the Salinas Valley Fairgrounds, making their streamlined process safer for families in need.
Myers said the Food Pantry will reopen once the pandemic subsides and when there is food available for them to obtain from the Food Bank and return to their regular Friday distributions.
Since the Food Pantry’s season runs through November, at which time Loaves and Fishes operates in King City until spring as part of their rotating seasons, Myers said it is possible loosening restrictions could lead to the pantry reopening by fall.
“It’s to be determined, according to circumstances beyond our control,” she said.
For now, assistance funds have been diverted to the Food Bank to help local families.
“We are planning on giving another $4,000 or $5,000,” Myers said. “If I’m not buying food, then that money is coming back to the Food Bank to feed the people here.”
Myers said the Food Pantry was closed this year after 15 years of service, and was done so with a sad heart.
“The main thing is safety and food,” she said. “We have to keep our people safe.”