Athens County Food Pantry workers preparing food for clients at the Route 13 location in March 2020.
The Athens County Food Pantry is serving families at the Athens County Department of Job and Family Services office on State Route 13. [Photo via ACFP]

Athens Co. Food Pantry Still Serving Families at Rt. 13 Location

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ATHENS, Ohio (WOUB) — The Athens County Food Pantry has served almost 300 families through March 17, and will continue to provide food for families in need.

The ACFP sent out a press release Wednesday, clarifying its food box program is still available even though the Athens County Department of Job and Family Services closed Tuesday as a precaution to the coronavirus pandemic.

The food pantry is serving clients through a window on the front porch of the ACJFS location on State Route 13, and delivering food to vehicles outside.

The ACFP normally distributes food to 415 families a month and saw an increase of around 100 families per month in January in February, according to the press release.

The number of clients may increase, as many businesses have reduced their hours or shut down entirely during the COVID-19 outbreak.

Food boxes are available Monday-Friday from 8a.m.-5p.m. The office is located at 13183 St. Rt. 13, Millfield.

ACFP President Karin Bright said in the press release that the food bank’s clients struggle to get enough to eat, even in the best of times.

“Times like these are incredibly troubling and we are doing our very best to feed our neighbors, even if it means through a window and on a porch,” she said.

Mike Harrington, co-food chair at the ACFP, said in the press release that the food bank has been sourcing more local food and relies heavily on the Southeast Ohio Foodbank for supplies.

“Recently, the Foodbank has not been able to keep in inventory many of the staple items that we try to regularly offer,” he said. “We are very grateful for their recent program of offering fresh produce on a weekly basis for pickup – and we have taken advantage of that program.

“…many local food providers are now experiencing severe supply chain disruptions, which has drastically impacted our ability to readily acquire food for our clients.  We continue to have discussions with our suppliers to monitor their supply situation so we can plan accordingly.”

For more information, visit the ACFP website.