Monetary donations are needed urgently at the San Francisco-Marin Food Bank this holiday season partly because of wildfires and power outages earlier in the year, according to a spokesman for the organization.
One-quarter of the food bank’s annual budget, or $4.2 million, is needed by Dec. 31. Donations have been fewer because many people donated to wildfire and power outage victims.
The food bank gives out 48 million pounds of food each year, serving 32,000 families each week.
Paul Ash, executive director of the food bank, illustrated the organization’s importance to those it serves by telling the story of one homebound woman who said of the volunteer who delivers her food, “I need you in my life.”
He said the woman appreciates the contact with the volunteer as well as the food.
“There’s the dual element,” he said, adding that sometimes the micro-contacts we have are really important to our psychological well-being.
Food bank spokesperson Pamela Wellner said changes to the federal tax code are also affecting donations, prompting middle class families to give less.
The rules now provide less of a tax deduction to middle class families, she said. Those families are often generous because they are closer to the people experiencing problems.