VENTURA, Calif. -- FoodShare of Ventura County has seen a dramatic reduction in food donations during a time when they are serving nearly 150,000 people a month.
A local church along with the Oxnard Fire Department is stepping up to help out.
Ventura County FoodShare is asking the community for donations. The organization has seen a big drop in supplies after its major food drives were canceled because of the pandemic.
"They said there is about 60,000 bags of food that they normally collect from that and they haven't been able to do it and so they said they wish someone could help with that and we said maybe we can,” said Jen Oaks, who is a pastor at Mission Church in Ventura.
Oaks answered the call and helped created the Feed805 initiative. The church was able to rally more than 60 Ventura County businesses as drop-off points for donations during the month of April.
"This Saturday May 1, from 9 a.m. until 12:00 p.m. at Mission Church. 5353 Walker Street we will have a big food drive,” said Oaks. “It is our last big push for this particular initiative so really it is just bring food."
Among the drop-off locations is all eight Oxnard Fire stations.
"We actually had a really awesome event happen where we had an entire baseball team, the Oxnard Royals, they stopped by the station and they had a pickup truck full of food and they dropped it all off and they met with the crew and they actually had a little pushup competition,” said Daniel Keller, who is a the Public Information Officer with the Oxnard Fire Department. “To be able to see that support from the community is awesome."
FoodShare says food insecurity impacts nearly one in six families in the county. Mission Church hopes to collect 60 pounds of food on Saturday before the food drive ends.
"Kind of a crazy goal to collect that much food, but we have just seen a crazy response from the community and it has been incredible,” said Oaks. “We are trying to bridge that gap and help provide them with the food that they need to keep serving the families in our community."
For more information on the drop-off location near you, click here.