United Way of Northeast Louisiana has launched Food for our Friends, aimed at serving the hard-working individuals in the community who have experienced income loss due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
In partnership with Entergy, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Louisiana Foundation, Food Bank of Northeast Louisiana, Robertson Produce, Rotary District 6190, and the City of Ruston, United Way NELA will provide direct food assistance to individuals from 12 parishes who are experiencing income loss due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
These individuals will be given the opportunity to apply for in-person food distribution, which will include a box of food donated by The Food Bank of Northeast Louisiana, fresh produce from Robertson Produce, and a grocery gift card from the UWNELA COVID-19 Response Fund.
Food for our Friends is being funded by the generous donations made to the UWNELA COVID-19 Response Fund. 100% of United Way of Northeast Louisiana’s COVID-19 Response Fund is being used to meet the needs of those most affected by the COVID-19 pandemic in the 12-parish region. Additionally, the Blue Cross Blue Shield of Louisiana Foundation and Entergy provided a $25,000 grant to expand the reach of Food for our Friends.
“Jointly with Blue Cross Blue Shield of Louisiana Foundation, Entergy is thrilled to provide this $25,000 grant to help United Way of Northeast Louisiana expand their COVID-19 response. As a company that responds when disaster strikes, Entergy recognizes the challenges faced by many of our ALICE neighbors. We remain steadfast in helping our community to power life,” said Amanda Edge, Entergy Louisiana’s community program developer.
30% of the households in Northeast Louisiana’s 12-parish region are identified as ALICE, or Asset Limited Income Constrained Employed. These individuals are employed and working hard, but still struggling to stay afloat. ALICE is often the hardest hit by a crisis like the COVID-19 pandemic.
“ALICE is the worker we see every day, providing crucial services to our community-- daycare workers, hair stylists, waiters, waitresses, among many others. Because of the generosity of those who’ve given to our COVID-19 Response Fund and the generosity of our partners, United Way of Northeast Louisiana is honored to assist these workers by helping them feed their families,” said Janet Durden, President of United Way of Northeast Louisiana.
Individuals/families eligible for the UWNELA Food for our Friends program must meet the following requirement:
- Individuals/families who were actively employed prior to the COVID-19 pandemic and are now experiencing income loss as a direct result of the COVID-19 pandemic, for example:
- Reduction in Work Hours
- Layoff/Unpaid Leave
To apply for Food for our Friends assistance, individuals may call 2-1-1 from any landline or mobile phone, text NELAFRIENDS to 898-211, or complete the online application at unitedwaynela.org/friends. Upon verification, approved applicants will be notified by text. Only one application per household. Food distribution is available only while supplies last.
Ways to donate to the UWNELA COVID-19 Response Fund:
- Text LACOVID to 91999
- Visit unitedwaynela.org/relief
- Mail a check or money order to United Way of Northeast Louisiana at 1201 Hudson Lane, Monroe, LA, 71201(indicate "UWNELA COVID-19 Response Fund" in the check memo)
For more information about the United Way of Northeast Louisiana COVID-19 response, contact Janet Durden, President of United Way of Northeast Louisiana, at 318.998.9204, or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
United Way of Northeast Louisiana works with volunteers, donors, and other organizations locally to create lasting community change in the areas of Education, Income, and Health, as well as Basic and Emergency Needs—the building blocks for a good quality of life. For more information about United Way of Northeast Louisiana, visit unitedwaynela.org, dial 2-1-1 on any landline or mobile phone, a free call 24/7, or text your zip code to 898-211. If you need real-time updates on COVID-19, text LACOVID to 898-211.