Written by the Noho Arts District
We are happy to share the successes of our local North Hollywood folks and would like to give a big round of applause to NoHo’s own health and fitness expert and personal trainer and adventure travel tour operator Jack Witt. Every year Jack does a volunteer project to help an aspect of our North Hollywood community. This year he’s done a food donation drive for the Valley Food Bank. During these unprecedented and scary times, we need to make sure our safety nets are secure but open our hearts to those in need. While dropping off his food donations, Jack had a chat with their director, William Hernandez.
How long have you been with Valley Food Bank?
I joined the team in March 2004 (16 years).
What keeps you motivated? What drives you?
Each and every day we receive feedback from struggling families how the food resources and other essentials have made a difference to them and their family.
How have things changed at Valley Food Bank since the pandemic started?
Great question. Without any notice or time to prepare we shifted gears to acquire as much food as we could distribute. Then we needed to convert to a farmers market style of distribution to comply with social distancing and minimal to no contact distribution. We served 10,000 additional families last month. Lots of food! And we’re happy that support has continued to make this happen.
What type of community and civic partners do you typically team up with?
Anyone and everyone that wants to help. Elected officials have been great as well as The Los Angeles Regional Food Bank and several Rotary Clubs and foundations.
What’s the best way people can help?
With the limitation of 10 volunteers per day to maintain social distancing and a safe environment for volunteers, the best way to help is donation of food and hygiene supplies and/or cash.
When things get back to normal, what’s ahead for Valley Food Bank?
I believe with have established a new level of support for struggling families and will work hard to maintain sufficient resources to continue our campaign – Fighting Hunger – Feeding Hope.