RESOURCES FOR THE FOOD SYSTEM
The Greater Chicago Food Depository has an immediate need for volunteers to help pack boxes of shelf-stable food to make sure their network of food pantries and distribution sites has enough food to meet the increased need in Cook County.
Call to Action
Crises often lay bare the social and economic inequities that exist in our systems and structure, and the coronavirus pandemic is no different. The coronavirus is disproportionately impacting low-income families, frontline foodworkers, food producers and food businesses.
Our local, state, and federal officials can and should intervene to ensure all people have the support necessary to weather the storm during this unprecedented crisis. Most importantly, families whose livelihoods have been affected by precautionary social distancing measures must have access to emergency income and a source of nutritious food to feed themselves and their children.
While emergency actions are imperative, longer term policy and system changes are also necessary to help us move to a more resilient, fair, and equitable food system that works for workers, farmers, business owners, and communities. We need to support the health and economic vitality of producers, small business owners, and workers throughout the food supply chain.
(adapted from the Call to Action of the Chicago Food Policy Action Council)
Got a Resource?
Need a Resource?
Add to COVID-19 & Chicago’s Food System: Resource Webpage
In order to provide support for Chicago’s food system during the COVID-19 outbreak, the Chicago Food Policy Action Council has conveened partners and is collecting and cataloging food related responses, resources, actions, and discussions. This webpage has an open forum allowing for anyone to add relevant information or ask pressing questions.
Connect to those in Illinois working in the food system to address COVID-19 related challenges.
In Chicago, the Chicago Office of Emergency Management is coordinating donations and volunteers here: https://www.chicago.gov/city/en/sites/covid-19/home/resources.html?#donation-information
FEEDING ILLINOIS FOOD BANKS
Regional food banks are the distribution hub for many local pantries and community-non-profits, all of whom deliver nutritious food to those in need. They need financial donations to help restock their shelves, particularly with pre-packaged items that can be easily distributed to those in need.
NEEDS LIST shared by Feeding Illinois:
- Food – to supplant declining donations from usual sources and channels.
- Funds – to purchase additional foods and support expanded services.
- Volunteers – to help sort, pack, and distribute food at both food banks and agencies.
- Boxes, Bags & To-Go Containers – to pre-pack food for alternative (i.e., social-distancing) distributions.
For more information and to donate, visit the website of your local food bank.
CHICAGO MUTUAL AID NETWORK
This COVID-19 Hardship & Help Page is part of a Chicago Mutual Aid Network that’s been started in response to the crisis– people can ask for assistance with food/groceries but also financial support. If folks are interested in volunteering to help with the Chicago Mutual Aid Network, please fill out this form.
CHICAGO PUBLIC SCHOOLS MEAL SITES
COLLABORATION AND NETWORKING
CHICAGO COVID-19 FOOD FORUM (ESPAÑOL ABAJO)
In order to provide support for Chicago’s food system during the COVID-19 outbreak, this forum is for collecting and cataloging food related responses, resources, actions, and discussions.
Foro de COVID-19 Respuesta Rápida para el Sistema Alimentario en Chicago
En apoyo al sistema alimentario de Chicago durante el COVID-19, desarrollamos este foro para recopilar y catalogar respuestas, recursos, acciones y información relacionados con el sistema alimentario.
Chicago Food Policy Action Council – https://www.chicagofoodpolicy.com/covid19
ATTENTION FARMERS, FOOD BUSINESSES, & NON-PROFITS: TAKE OUR SURVEY!
COVID-19 FOOD SYSTEMS RAPID RESPONSE
Please click on one of the survey links to inform food justice advocates working on COVID-19 rapid response efforts in the Chicago region! Your input is critical. You can take the survey multiple times as the crisis evolves. Survey languages:
Illinois COVID-19 Matchmaking: Institutional food, resources, labor, technical assistance is a tool to be used to match up needs and surplus in the Illinois institutional food system. We welcome anyone to add, view or contact others on the list directly. Examples of listings include:
- Those with a surplus of meat or vegetables that need a home
- Those looking for local food to serve to displaced constituents
- Those with a need for extra hands at their facilities (milkers, kitchen staff, drivers)
- Those looking for job opportunities after their institution has closed or reduced labor
- Those with additional storage space for food that needs to be preserved
View the spreadsheet below (use the tabs at the bottom to click through each category).
To add a need or a resource to Illinois COVID-19 Matchmaking: Institutional food, resources, labor, technical assistance, please use the link below to fill out the form.