Prodisee Pantry working toward ‘new normal’

Coronavirus

SPANISH FORT, Ala. (WKRG) — Prodisee Pantry in Spanish Fort says the number of families getting help has nearly tripled during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Now, the food bank is re-working how they operate, and preparing for their new normal.

“We’re still running at almost three times we normally see,” said Deann Servos, the Executive Director of Prodisee Pantry.

Prodisee Pantry has been performing Mass Emergency Food Distributions for 10 weeks now, the need is still great, but it has started to go down.

“The first two weeks, we saw over 1,000 family food units going out. This week we saw just shy of 700 food units going out,” said Servos.

The pantry has handed out more than 200 tons of food.

“If we are already over half of the tonnage of food that we would distribute in this 10-week window, by the year’s end we will probably distribute more food than we have in the history of Prodisee Pantry. Maybe besides Katrina,” said Servos.

Through June, Prodisee will continue Mass Emergency Food Distributions in their parking lot for families struggling financially.

Starting in July, they plan to move back inside. All volunteers and clients will be asked to wear masks and maintain social distancing.

“We can no longer have 200 families waiting in our building to be seen and process. We’ll be down to 20-25. That’s assisting 25 clients at a time. We’re going to ask our families to be patient,” said Servos.

The new plan will be their new normal for the long-term.

“That plan will carry through as long as this pandemic lasts. As long as there is no vaccine and the community isn’t vaccinated. We want to keep everyone safe,” said Servos.

Prodisee Pantry will continue food distributions every Tuesday.

If you plan to attend a distribution in June, you will still first go to the Spanish Fort High School, to get checked in. Prodisee Pantry asks you get there before 11 a.m., so they can scale back the time their volunteers are working in the heat.

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