JONESBORO, Ark. (KAIT) - Arkansans faced with unemployment and furloughs brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic are getting a little help feeding their families.
The Farm Bureau Insurance companies have donated $500,000 to be distributed among the state’s six food banks.
Christie Jordan, CEO of the Food Bank of Northeast Arkansas in Jonesboro, said in a Friday news release the donation is coming at a critical time.
“Right now, many people are facing hard times as they have been furloughed or employed due to COVID-19 and recent storms,” she said. “People may be in a tough place they didn’t expect to be in just a few weeks ago.”
Since the pandemic began, more than 150,000 Arkansans have filed for unemployment benefits.
Jordan expects its food pantry network, which serves 12 counties in NEA, will face an increased need for its services for months to come as families recover.
“The Food Bank and our partner food pantries are here to help,” she said. “We want families to know they shouldn’t feel embarrassed to ask for help.”
The $500,000 gift will be distributed based on the number of counties each of the state’s six food banks serves. The release did not specify how much the NEA Food Bank would receive.
“Food banks are playing an especially important role in feeding families during this unprecedented time,” said David Moore, senior vice president and general manager of Farm Bureau’s insurance companies in Arkansas. “We are humbled and honored to provide this gift for your use.”