Contact: Morgan Pulleyblank
Director of Development & Communications
BERKELEY, Calif – The Berkeley-East Bay Humane Society (Berkeley Humane) and Berkeley Food Network, two of the most trusted organizations in Berkeley supporting food security, have teamed up to make it easier for residents in need to feed themselves and their pets. Now, Berkeley Food Network food distribution sites will make pet food available, so pet owners can pick up nutrition for all members of their family in one stop.
Since the beginning of the COVID-19 crisis, both Berkeley Food Network and Berkeley Humane have seen an unprecedented need from families and individuals facing food insecurity.
“We know that 1 in 5 Berkeley residents—before COVID-19— were not able to put enough food on their tables to live healthy, hunger-free lives,” stated Sara Webber, Berkeley Food Network’s Executive Director. “And of course, that hunger extends to beloved pets. Increasingly, individuals and families accessing the services of Berkeley Food Network have been requesting food for their dog or cat.”
Berkeley Humane has an established Pet Food Pantry which has been distributing free pet food to families struggling with food and financial insecurity. Since the beginning of the pandemic the number of families in need of emergency pet food has dramatically increased. The need for free pet food went from 5,000 lbs in 2019 to an astonishing 75,000 or more in 2020.
“Good things happen when partnerships are created to tackle the greatest needs facing the Berkeley community. We are so grateful to Bayer U.S. and Greater Good Charities for supporting this partnership,” stated Jeffrey Zerwekh, Berkeley Humane’s Executive Director. “
The two organizations are a perfect match and the idea to collaborate was suggested by Jennifer Cogley, Deputy Director, Community Relations at Bayer. Both organizations received financial assistance from Bayer to help meet the needs of the vulnerable populations in our community.
In order to celebrate this new partnership Greater Good Charities contributed 300 Good Packs to distribute to the clients at Berkeley Food Network and the Berkeley Humane. Each Good Pack is a self-support kit containing basic survival supplies for homeless, imminently homeless, or those living in transitional housing. They are packaged as a sealed backpack that includes essential items, like a warm blanket, t-shirt, socks, soap, shampoo, a toothbrush and toothpaste and a reusable water bottle.
Since so many of the clients have pets, Greater Good Charities provided a supplemental Pet Pack for those with a pet and includes dog food and treats, a dog toy, a slip lead and a collapsible water/food dish all assembled in a packing cube.
Good Packs are available at both Berkeley Humane and Berkeley Food Network’s food distribution sites, while supplies last.
Berkeley Humane’s Pet Food Pantry (food for dogs and cats only):
Every Sunday 10am–12pm 2700 Ninth Street, Berkeley
More information at: berkeleyhumane.org
Berkeley Food Network’s On-Site Pantry (food for people, dogs, and cats):
Monday – Thursday: 10am – 2pm Monday & Wednesday: 5pm – 6:30pm
1st and 3rd Saturdays: 10am – 12pm
1925 Ninth St., Berkeley
More information at: berkeleyfoodnetwork.org
Berkeley Food Network
The Berkeley Food Network was founded in December 2016 with the goal of ending hunger in Berkeley. We have an innovative mix of community-centered and collaborative programs to get healthy, nutritious food to the people in Berkeley who need it. At the heart of this work is our food sourcing and distribution hub operating out of our warehouse. We source food from the Alameda County Community Food Bank and local food businesses that is later distributed to Berkeley residents. The graphic below outlines specifically how our community-centered approach operates to end hunger in Berkeley.
With its origins dating back to 1895, today Berkeley Humane serves the people and animals of our community by providing life-saving programs for cats and dogs, cultivating compassion, and strengthening the human-animal bond. With the support of a dedicated and talented volunteer and staff team, Berkeley Humane intakes animals from municipals shelters around the Bay Area who are often in need of medical care, improved nutrition, enrichment and lots of love. In 2019, Berkeley Humane conducted over 1,200 adoptions and touched the lives of an additional 1,000 additional pets through related services. Learn more at www.berkeleyhumane.org.