Community Action Services offers help and opportunities for volunteers

Social distancing, office and restaurant closures, layoffs and furloughs, homeschooling, barren grocery store shelves and worries about home eviction have our entire nation understandably worried.

Add to that Utah’s recent earthquake, and fears continue to escalate. Throughout all this uncertainty, however, Community Action Services and Food Bank – an agency that serves the needy populations of Utah, Wasatch and Summit counties – remains open and available during the COVID-19 pandemic to assist all those families in crisis.

Having recently altered the agency’s procedures to ensure the health and safety of our clients, employees and volunteers, CASFB continues to be a valuable resource to provide our most in-need populations with food and emergency housing assistance.

Volunteer opportunities are readily available as well.

Prior to COVID-19, our clients were invited to walk through our pantry and select the canned and fresh food items of which their families are in most need.

Now, to guard against spreading this virus and adhere to social distancing guidelines, volunteers are actively preparing boxes that are being distributed to clients based on their family size.

Those premade boxes are then delivered curbside to clients. With school closures continuing until at least May 1, and with many adults being laid off or forced to stay home because they can’t afford childcare, we believe many people are struggling to feed their families.

Community Action Services and Food Bank is here to help. If you know of anyone in need, please direct them to one of our locations, and they will receive the sustenance they need: 815 South, Freedom Blvd., Provo; 34 West  200 South,, Heber City; 17 South Main Street, Coalville; 30 South Main Street., Kamas.

While the nation awaits updates of a government stimulus program, there remain many laid-off or furloughed people who are now desperately trying to make their monthly rent payment.

CASFB has a program designed just for these dire circumstances. For those who qualify, emergency housing assistance is possible. Caseworkers are available to meet with clients over the phone or via email to walk them through options and eligibility.

To learn if you qualify, reach out to CASFB at (801) 373-8200 or visit our Provo location.

As we focus on perfecting our social distancing skills, it’s likely we all will have some more time on our hands.

If you’ve maxed out your personal screen time, cleaned your home top to bottom, organized your closets and now want to find a new project to keep you busy, consider volunteering or hosting a virtual food drive.

The food pantry at Community Action Services and Food Bank is still in need of volunteers to help create those food boxes for clients.

If you are looking to get out of the house, we invite you to consider adding a two-hour volunteering block to your schedule.

Small groups of volunteers under 10 people, all over the age of 16, are encouraged to don gloves and face masks and help fill those food boxes.

If you are interested, please call (801) 373-8200 first to check availability.

As you may know, one of our largest annual food drives, Feed Utah 2020 (formerly Scouting for Food), has been postponed until this fall. The need for nonperishable canned food, however, still remains.

Donations can continue to be made to our food bank in two significant ways:

Donate cans: You can rotate the canned food in your pantry and gather up your slightly outdated food and drop it off 24/7 through the food bank chute at our Provo location.

Donate cash: Now is a great time to host a virtual food drive through social media. Every $1 donated to Community Action Services provides approximately four meals to your neighbors in need. You can donate easily and safely through our website or our Facebook page. (Serve Daily submission.)

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