LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WAVE) - Kentucky Harvest has helped the Family Scholar House for nearly 16 years, and the support is continuing during the coronavirus crisis.
Family Scholar House CEO Cathe Dykstra said 65 percent of its adults lost their jobs within the first two weeks of the pandemic, and another 18 percent took a pay cut. The food donations -- more than 4,000 pounds’ worth -- from two Kentucky Harvest trucks will help feed thousands of families.
“I’d be lying if I said that I wasn’t pretty stressed out,” said Alayna Lofgren, who lives at the Family Scholar House. “I think it’s taken a little bit of a toll on everybody’s mental health.”
Lofgren is a single mother working from home while being a full-time student during the COVID-19 lockdown.
“I have a 4-year-old who has ADHD and he’s bouncing off the walls, so it has been stressful,” Lofgren said.
Family Scholar House provides housing and educational support for single-parent families like Lofgren’s, as well as foster alumni. Dykstra said it feeds 500 households every week.
At the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, its families thought they would be fine.
“They realized we don’t have anything,” Dykstra said, reciting a few complaints her team has been hearing. “'We don’t have a car. We don’t have a way to go get it. We can’t ride with our friends. We can’t take them. Most of the TARC routes have been curtailed.' Or they’re scared to put their kids on the TARC to go get groceries.”
This week, Kentucky Harvest took away that stress with a nearly 4,200-pound food donation of dairy, meats, canned goods and thousands of snackables.
“This is how we’re feeding our families," Dykstra said, adding that her team has discussed what would happen if it faced a food shortage. She said they were committed to families before COVID-19; it will stay committed during and after the crisis.
”Families will not survive without our help,” Dykstra said."I’m worried about a whole lot of things at home, and to be able to not worry about food, what I’m going to eat or make for dinner, that’s a huge relief,” Lofgren said.