Foodshare announced that its emergency drive-thru food distribution will return to East Hartford’s Rentschler Field on Jan. 12.
Running since the beginning of the pandemic, the Bloomfield nonprofit has distributed over 6 million meals at the site and hopes to continue doing so as families across the state face ongoing food insecurity.
“This distribution is important because it’s safe. It’s a drive-thru, touchless distribution and it’s helping people that have never used our services before,” said Jason Jakubowski, president and CEO of Foodshare.
The winter distribution will take place on Tuesdays from 9:30 a.m. to 1 p.m., and one allotment of food per car will be available.
The organization averages 2,000 cars per distribution at Rentschler Field. The most the site has seen was 2,800 in one day, Jakubowski said.
“Whenever I go out to Rentschler Field, it’s equal parts depressing and uplifting. Depressing because this is reality here in the state of Connecticut in the year 2021, but also uplifting because there are so many people that have rallied together in order to make this distribution as well as other relief efforts happen,” he added.
Jakubowski said organizing a winter distribution was a challenge, but Foodshare was able to work around it with the help of winterized tents. Foodshare advises people to check local news in the event of inclement weather.
“This is the winter in New England and there’s always that unpredictability. The biggest difference is that people need to be aware of the weather and that it factors into this distribution now.”
In addition to the emergency distribution, Foodshare provides food to over 260 pantries, community kitchens and mobile food-share sites.