ELIZABETH, NJ - In a joint effort with the Community Foodbank of New Jersey, the County of Union will hold an emergency drive-up food distribution for County residents September 12 in an effort to aid those affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. Beginning at 9 a.m. at Kean University. The distribution will take place in the parking lot located at the intersection of North and Morris Avenues.

The food distribution, which will be on a first-come, first-served with no registration is required, is being sponsored and coordinated by the County of Union and the Community FoodBank of New Jersey. Feeding America, of which CFBNJ is a member, projects a 56% increase in food insecurity throughout New Jersey as a result of COVID-19--an additional 432,000 residents. This rate is higher than the national average of 46% and greater than any of New Jersey's neighboring states.

In Union County, specifically, the projected food insecurity rate has risen from 8.2% to 12.9%.

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Residents who wish to pick up food must arrive in a car as walk-ups will not be accommodated. Upon arrival, each driver will have to present identification with their name and address and indicate how many people reside in their household. Recipients will receive an emergency box of non-perishable items and fresh produce, with enough to sustain a family for several days. Please note that only one box of food will be provided per vehicle.

"The increase in need for food assistance among our New Jersey neighbors during this crisis has been staggering, presenting a greater challenge than anything that the FoodBank has faced throughout its 45-year history," said Carlos Rodriguez, President & CEO of the Community FoodBank of New Jersey. "Partnerships like the one that we have with Union County are what allow the FoodBank to continue its unprecedented response, reaching more individuals and families in need than ever before."

This event will run in compliance with state COVID-19 orders, regarding social distancing and other protocols. All recipients must remain in their cars with windows rolled up at all times, otherwise masks are required. Food boxes will be placed in the trunk or truck bed of the vehicle by volunteers.

For questions and more information, residents may call the UCDHS Director’s Action Line at 888-845-3434 or 908-558-2288.

This event will take place, rain or shine. Kean University is located at 1000 Morris Avenue in Union.