Gov. Kevin Stitt announced Wednesday $6 million from the state’s federal coronavirus relief funding will go toward helping food banks across the state restock.
The Community Food Bank of Eastern Oklahoma and Regional Food Bank of Oklahoma will distribute food purchased with the funds to partners in their areas.
"Oklahoma’s food banks have been such a valuable partner in our state’s comprehensive response to COVID-19. I’m proud to be able to deliver these funds to help replenish their supplies and ensure they have what they need to continue their important mission of feeding Oklahomans who need assistance," Stitt said in a statement.
Since March, the two food banks have distributed a combined 7.3 million pounds more food than during the same time period last year. Food banks across the state have seen up to a 30% increase in the number of Oklahomans looking for help.
"With many avenues of securing donated food interrupted due to this pandemic, food banks have resorted to purchasing more food to meet the vastly increased demand. While hopeful for a quick recovery, we know the benefits of an improved economy will take longest to reach the people we serve," Community Food Bank of Eastern Oklahoma Lori Long said in a statement.