Dear Partner Agencies,
We are grateful for your communication of questions and concerns this past week regarding the COVID-19 outbreak that is affecting the nation. We want to reassure you that MANNA is continually working on our preparedness plan to ensure we are meeting the hunger needs of Western North Carolina.
It's important to us that there is a clear, uniform message from MANNA to our Partner Agencies. To accomplish this we will be increasing communication across all channels including but not limited to regular email blasts, text alerts, direct email, and phone communications.
In response to questions we have received, and trying to anticipate future questions, we have compiled a guide of best practices from Feeding America and further recommendations directly from MANNA.
Food Distribution Best Practices:
- Be vigilant about sanitizing surfacing and hand washing.
- Ensure that volunteers and staff with symptoms stay home.
- Increase the intensity and frequency of your cleaning schedule and use disinfectants on surfaces including door handles, railings, and counters. The use of a bleach solution has been shown to be effective against COVID-19 pathogens.
2) Stay open for food distribution if possible, moving to the following models where you can:
- Host “drive-through” mobile pantries where clients drive a vehicle through a distribution line. Consult local law enforcement to ensure proper traffic control is available.
- Shift to “to-go meals” for meal sites
- Schedule appointments to limit the number of people congregating at a pantry site at one time. This may require cell phone numbers or emails information from clients. The following free tools are not customized for operations – however, they may prove helpful:
- Calendly.com – Free scheduling site
- Remind.com – Free text or email system for teachers. Set up a “classroom” per time slot or per distribution.
- Suspend operations from client choice to food box distribution
3) Relax TEFAP and other intake paperwork
to limit person-to-person interaction
Starting on March 23rd MANNA will be shifting all agency shopping from the sales floor to our online ordering system. We will be providing further information regarding these changes on Monday, March 16th. As always, if you have questions or concerns regarding this change or any other changes please contact us.
As of now, all deliveries will remain as scheduled.
Communicating with MANNA:
It is imperative that you communicate your pantry status and any changes you many have with MANNA as frequently as possible. Our goal is that we can present clear and accurate information to all people who are in need of food assistance.
- Have you changed you distribution dates or hours of distribution?
- Will you be shifting to a different style of food distribution? (Example: Drive through or pre-boxed food)
- Do you need volunteers from the community?
Communicate any and all changes with your Zone Coordinator or our Agency Relations Coordinator.
MANNA Zone Coordinator Information:
Amy Sims, Western Zone Outreach Coordinator – 828-399-1147, email@example.com
Kaitlyn Smith, Eastern Zone Outreach Coordinator – 434-806-9965, firstname.lastname@example.org
Leah Cormier, Buncombe County Outreach Coordinator – 828-774-5915, email@example.com
Chris Rainwater, Agency Relations Coordinator - 828-299-3663 x1272, firstname.lastname@example.org
Actions to Stay Up to Date:
Join our Partner Agency text alert system to receive communications right to your smart phone:
Text PEACH to (828)348-5883
Finally, to access the most up to date Partner Agency information and Frequently Asked Questions we strongly encourage you to refer back to this
We wish everyone well,
The Agency Relations Team