We at Facing Hunger Foodbank are committed to providing you with updates regarding the COVID-19 crisis. Our situation changes dramatically day by day.
Facing Hunger Foodbank has established a Coronavirus Emergency Food Fund, which is allowing us to quickly respond and serve those affected by illness, quarantines, school closures, layoffs, furloughs, and other economic hardships. We have to ensure we are ready to help however we can, and that we are nimble in our daily response to the extraordinary events now facing us.
Facing Hunger Foodbank implemented a disaster response plan that reflects the sudden and drastic declines in retail food donations, social distancing limitations on volunteer efforts, and the need for low-contact food distributions. I am happy to share with you that, even with our streamlined emergency operations, we have increased food distribution by 40% compared to this time last month.
Meanwhile, we are still working on meal programs, including those serving seniors and children. Since the school closures, Facing Hunger Foodbank has made up some of the resulting meal gap, in addition to the meals provided to children and families through our food pantry operations. We are currently serving an additional 2,000 food-insecure seniors through a combination of mobile food distributions and home-delivered groceries. All emergency food assistance related to the COVID-19 medical and economic crisis has thus far been made possible through private donations.
At Facing Hunger Foodbank, there is no higher priority than the safety of our volunteers, staff and the community we serve. All volunteers and staff is critically important to Facing Hunger Foodbank. Keeping a clean facility and following best practices for food safety are part of our culture. Since the onset of COVID-19, we have taken extra precautions, including increased cleaning and sanitizing of our facility. We are following the guidance of the CDC, local and state health agencies. Feeding America is also offering guidance specific to food banks.
The need for food in our community was already high. The economic impact of COVID-19 has increased that need beyond what we could have imagined. Many are looking to Facing Hunger for assistance, leadership and comfort. Thanks to the support of our incredible network of supporters, volunteers and partners, we are here for them. Our community has been tested before and emerged stronger. We will again.
On behalf of Facing Hunger Foodbank and the people we are privileged to serve, thank you. I wish you and all those dear to you good health, strength, and fortitude as we weather the storm.