In moments of crisis, it’s important to celebrate successes.
The Legislature’s Supplemental Budget (H.4808) support extraordinary costs related to the COVID-19 pandemic that require immediate attention, including $9 million to support MEFAP food purchasing and investments in the FoodSource Hotline for our neighbors in need. This budget now goes to the Governor for his signature. This funding is a major victory for anti-hunger advocates and those we serve.
The Greater Boston Food Bank (GBFB) and our partners are distributing record high levels of food across the Commonwealth. However, as the $600 unemployment benefits are set to expire soon, we’re bracing for even greater need.
The state’s supplemental funding will help GBFB address summer hunger and bridge the gap until the state passes its FY21 budget.
Food Assistance Funding in the Supplemental Budget
The Massachusetts Emergency Food Assistance Program (MEFAP) addresses the immediate food needs of Massachusetts residents by providing the staples of a healthy diet.
The supplemental budget also includes other GBFB key priorities, including the FoodSource Hotline and the Child Nutrition Outreach Program.
Call to Action
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As we all know, the COVID-19 pandemic has stretched the limits of the emergency food assistance system as we experience sky-high levels of unemployment. According to Feeding America, 1 in 5 Massachusetts residents has been identified as food insecure – a rate higher than experienced during the 2008 Great Recession.
While the need for food is immediate, we know there will be lasting effects from this crisis as communities, businesses, and families struggle to recover. This supplemental budget is necessary to bridging the gap we’re facing right now.
Now more than ever, we need your continued advocacy to ensure food assistance remains a top priority for our governmental officials.