SAN JOSE (KCBS) – It’s a double whammy for the Second Harvest Food Bank. One of the Bay Area’s largest food providers is seeing a slump in donations while the demand is higher than ever.
“I think we’re seeing a softening in donations across the board,” said Kathy Jackson, CEO of the Second Harvest Food Bank for Santa Clara and San Mateo Counties.
Jackson attributes the slump in giving, down a few percentage points, to an overall impression in the Valley that the economy is going great, and everyone is doing fine. The head of the food bank told KCBS it’s just the opposite: rising rents have led to more families seeking help, not less.
“A big issue we’re starting to encounter is what I’m calling homeless with a roof. These are people who are doubling, families who are doubling and tripling up in apartments and in homes. They may rent a garage, they may rent a room,” Jackson said. “And all of a sudden they don’t have access, reliably, to refrigeration, or to cooking facilities. That’s complicating our efforts at Second Harvest, to provide food assistance.”
Jackson was cautiously optimistic they will be able to deliver the food that’s needed, while watching the food bank’s budget “like a hawk.”