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Volunteers Share Bounty With Residents In Need
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Volunteers Draven Walker, left, Vince Alba and Liz Nisperos place the bags of food on a table in front of Riverbank Christian Food Sharing for pick up by a client on Friday morning, March 20. Marg Jackson/The News

The next regularly scheduled food distribution through Riverbank Christian Food Sharing isn’t on the calendar until Friday, April 10.

At least for now.

That date could be pushed back even farther, depending on how well the state ‘flattens the curve’ of the ongoing coronavirus pandemic and if there will be services available at that time.

Christian Food Sharing coordinator Lynda Silva said the Friday, March 20 giveaway was the last until at least April 10 and volunteers tried to hand out as much food as possible to those in the community in need.

They also adhered strictly to social distancing protocols, with marks on the sidewalk in front of the Scout Hall on High Street set six feet apart. Clients signed in one at a time, the pen then wiped down with a disinfectant wipe. Food bags were placed on a table in front of the hall by volunteers, then picked up by clients and taken to their vehicles.

“We are giving away everything we can,” noted Silva. “We have a lot of perishable stuff.”

Silva said technically, Riverbank Christian Food Sharing is “an emergency food pantry” and typically hands out enough food to constitute a three-day supply.

That changed on Friday, however, as they looked to load up clients ahead of the two-week shutdown.

“Everyone got a good amount of food, hopefully enough to tide them over,” Silva explained. “They received a variety of meats, hot dogs, lettuce, yogurt, milk, bread, fresh cauliflower, along with canned vegetables, fruit, rice, beans and more.”

Those attending the distribution were grateful for the added bags and boxes, especially in light of not having the site in operation for the next couple of Fridays.

They also paid attention to the social distancing, said officials, and were very respectful.

“They get all their food groups,” said volunteer Liz Nisperos, working to fill some orders. “They even have some dessert in here, some cookies and stuff.”

Silva said having to close the doors is hard on everyone, volunteers and clients alike.

“It kills me to close, even for two weeks,” Silva said. “It’s a crazy time.”