Second Harvest Food Bank says it is preparing to respond to the threat of tropical weather in Acadiana and Southwest Louisiana in the coming days.
According to the organization, staff at their Lafayette facility are assessing emergency supplies and potential need, and are in contact with emergency officials in all parishes of the food bank's regular service area.
Ida is expected to make landfall Monday, August 8, somewhere along the northern Gulf Coast, with South Louisiana currently in the crosshairs of most models.
Following Ida's passage, Second Harvest Regional Director Paul Scelfo says they are ready to deliver aid as soon as it is safe to do so.
"We prepare year-round to handle any type of emergency, and this storm will just be the latest in a long line of disasters our team has handled," he said. "We revise our emergency-response plan year-round for disasters in any month of the year, but we are on higher alert as we enter the busiest part of the 2021 hurricane season.
More than 3,500 disaster-readiness boxes, including Abbott Disaster Boxes containing Pedialyte, Zone Nutrition Bars, Ensure and Pediasure are currently housed at Second Harvest facilities along with hundreds of thousands of pounds of other supplies. This includes more than 160,000 bottles of water, they say.
Along with non-perishable disaster food goods, Second Harvest facilities feature two commercial-grade kitchens capable of producing more than 10,000 hot meals a day, along with the delivery infrastructure to make these meals possible to those most in need. 10,000 flash-frozen prepared disaster meals are also on hand.
Second Harvest says that 16 million pounds of food were delivered to survivors of Hurricanes Laura and Delta across Acadiana and Southwest Louisiana.
"While we hope for the best, we are always preparing for the worst," Scelfo said. "It is only with the help of our supporters, donors, and community partners that we are able to once again activate to face a major threat to our communities."
How to help:
Funds: A monetary gift is the most efficient way to support our response to this emergency.
Go to no-hunger.org to make a tax-deductible donation. Every $1 raised will help us provide 4 meals to someone impacted by this latest South Louisiana emergency.
Food, water, disaster supplies: Donations of non-perishable food, especially proteins, are greatly appreciated. Bottled water and cleaning supplies will also be in high demand. Donations can be dropped off at 215 E. Pinhook Rd in Lafayette, 7:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.
Volunteer: There are many volunteer opportunities following a disaster. The most important thing is to get pre-registered as a Second Harvest volunteer now, so that we will already have your contact information in our system. Register now at: no-hunger.org/volunteer
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