Tampa Bay, Tampa Bay External Affairs, Ryan Gorman discussed on iHeartRadio Podcast Premiere
July 21st I'm Ryan Gorman with me this evening, James Berland er on the board and joining us on the hotline. Right now we have feeding Tampa Bay External Affairs Officer Shannon Oliveiro to talk about the work feeding Tampa Bay is doing and their new Friday evening drive through pantries. Shannon, How are you? I'm too and fine. How are you doing, Ryan? Good. Thank you so much for taking a few minutes to talk to us. Give us an update on what's happening here in the Tampa Bay area. So what are you seeing when it comes to need across the bay has it gone down Any since the beginning of this pandemic is, it's still maintaining a pretty high level, or has it increased with the resurgence of the virus recently? We're actually seeing a bit of an increase. We've added a mega pantry program. Which is and we have six of them. Now they're in the R outer counties. And, of course, Hillsborough County is well and we added a USF pantry. Maybe three or four weeks ago that is growing. So we have to now in Hillsborough County. And that U S. F pantry is growing. And now we've added this Friday Pantry in the evening on both sides of the bay to help those families that are maybe working families that need a little bit of assistance with food. So that they can come after work and access. Some groceries for their families to get meals on the table. What about your operations? Hasn't gotten any easier now that you've been doing it for a while. During the course of this pandemic, you know the protocols that need to be taken in order to keep your people and everybody else who is looking to get assistance safe. Has that gotten any easier at this point? Well, our team is is is pretty thorough. We've learned from every experience that we have. And we kind of lean in to every need if you will, so we continue to change our protocols. As we go. We provide a safe Opportunity for those that are in need, and we also provide a very safe opportunity for the volunteers that we couldn't do without. You know, we we have a team. Our team has grown now to 140 plus Before the pandemic. We were probably around 70. We have furloughed workers that help us. We went from probably 20 truck drivers. So now we have 40 plus So we've had to grow to lean into that need. Those that depended on it before the pandemic was about 650,000 to the 10 counties that we serve, and now we have 1.7 million who need us throughout the Tampa Bay area. Wow from from over 600,000 to over 1.7 million during the course of this pandemic. 1.7 million, and that's based on unemployment. People that are out of work people that are struggling, so the need is great. We are serving two million meals a week. That's incredible. And I'm assuming to keep up with the demands. Obviously, you're in need of help from those in the community that can offer some kind of assistance, whether it's you know, ah, donation of food or monetary donation, talked a little bit about that, because that's a big undertaking. It really, really is again. We have an amazing team and we do have amazing volunteers and we have great sponsors. So anyone that can help us by donating we.