GIBBON — The mobile food pantry of the Community Action Partnership of Mid-Nebraska, which was planned Friday at Gibbon School, has been moved to the nonprofit Food Bank at 11th Street and B Avenue in Kearney.
The coronavirus has closed the school, said Kyla Martin, development director at Community Action.
Those picking up food must make an appointment between 9 a.m. and noon on a first-call, first-come basis. Call Kristin at Community Action at 308-865-1354 ext. 108. Recipients do not have to be residents of Gibbon.
“Anyone can come, but they must make appointments, and we will distribute food as long as it lasts,” Martin said.
Volunteers will bring out food to vehicles. Only prepackaged food will be available. In order to avoid group gatherings, people will not select items in the warehouse, as is the usual practice.
The food was supplied by the Food Bank for the Heartland in Omaha specifically for Gibbon, a much smaller community than Kearney. The food was ordered in December, Martin said, and the quantity could not be increased.
The Mobile Food Pantry program serves seven communities in Buffalo County: Amherst, Elm Creek, Gibbon, Kearney, Pleasanton, Ravenna and Shelton. Each month, on two selected Fridays, pantries are set up for two hours in one of those towns on a rotating schedule.
Martin said each pantry attracts people from 16 communities on average, some from as far as Red Cloud and Cozad. “They travel an hour each way for the food,” she said.
The last distribution in Kearney, held last fall, served almost 200 households, Martin said.
Friday’s food quantity will be far less, and patrons won’t be able to select what they want, Martin emphasized.
“They might get something they don’t like, but hopefully they will share it, and nothing will go to waste,” she said.
A Kearney Food Bank will be April 3, but one set for April 17 at Amherst School may be relocated. Details are not final, Martin said.