Salinas, CA, to Los Angeles, CA
By Sydney Loeper August 4, 2020
On Wednesday, July 29th, The Farmlink Project facilitated a recurring delivery of 25,000 pounds of mixed produce from Taylor Farms in Salinas, California to Love Community in Los Angeles, California.
Joe Rostro inherited Love Community in the late 1990s and has since been the CEO. When talking with Ralph Magana, Director of Public Relations, he stated that Love Community now serves 2,000 to 3,000 families per week on their Saturday distribution day, as demand has grown since March.
Ralph emphasized that the COVID-19 pandemic has increased the number of people visiting each week, putting stress on the number of volunteers needed to package and distribute food. Internally, volunteers began taking precautions when COVID-19 began to spread in the United States by simply not volunteering. But, over the last few months, volunteers have come to assist Love Community to meet the growing demand.
Along with more volunteers, many food distributors, including Love Community are in desperate need of dry goods. When demand increased for packaged goods at conventional grocery stores, food banks stopped receiving donations—now these items are rare to come by. With more families to serve, transportation has needed to increase too, but renting trucks has been another challenge over the past six months.
Ralph shares an anecdote about a time Love Community aided their community. A few months ago, they received word that a local family was in desperate need. All 15 family members tested positive for COVID-19, and they wanted only a single box of food to feed themselves, but Love Community delivered ten boxes to their front door. Ralph compared the treatment this family received from others as “being lepers; no one was willing to help them” because they were sick, but Love Community was not afraid to step in and help. They delivered the boxes because they would “not let the children go to sleep hungry.” Ralph exclaimed, “it’s so satisfying to aid the community!”
“Although our size is small compared to other food banks, we are driven by love and compassion.” The Farmlink Project would like to thank Taylor Farms for their continued supply of fresh produce, and we’re grateful to Love Community for the amazing work they are doing.