Convoy of Hope Goes Beyond ‘200 Million Meals’ in Response to COVID-19
January 8, 2021 | 8:30 a.m.
If you’re the type of person who orders chicken when you eat out, chances are you’ve enjoyed a meal or two thanks to poultry farmers in Northwest Arkansas. However, as restaurants closed and the economy declined during the COVID-19 pandemic, many of the farmers couldn’t earn an income.
Jonathan Medstone is a leader at Immanuel Baptist Church in Rogers, Arkansas. He and others in the congregation aim to go into their community and help people in two hours or less.
“Under two hours and we don’t have to come in and use your restroom,” Jonathan said with a laugh.
But when he saw his community struggling during the pandemic, he extended this time limit. The need was too great.
“When you go into these communities, it’s not just husband, wife, and kids,” Jonathan said. “It’s husband, wife, kids, mother-in-law, father-in-law, cousin, and auntie all living in one household, relying on one income. When the head of household is impacted by COVID-19 … they cannot afford to feed their family.”
Jonathan reached out to Convoy of Hope for help, and we sent seven tractor-trailers of food to his team. Rather than hosting weekly food distributions, Jonathan chose to meet people where they were.
Local government and community partners provided addresses for families who were quarantining or recovering from COVID-19, allowing volunteers to deliver groceries directly to homes.
“Each week was different for us. We didn’t have it all in one site,” Jonathan said. “And we deliberately did that because we wanted to make sure we were able to serve as many people as possible.”
Altogether, Jonathan and his team hosted seven distributions and served more than 5,000 families. He hopes others will see their work and choose to help when they see someone in need.
“You and I have to do our part and step in to say, ‘How can we help?’,” Jonathan said.
Convoy of Hope remains committed to providing help and hope in 2021. Since the pandemic began, we’ve provided more than 200 million meals to those in need — all thanks to partners like Jonathan Medstone and supporters like you.
January 5, 2021 | 10:10 a.m.
We are pleased to announce that Convoy of Hope has distributed more than 200 million meals in response to COVID-19! We couldn’t have made it this far without the kindness and coordination of our supporters, partners, volunteers, and team members.
John Davis has seen the effects of this teamwork first-hand. This year, John drove nearly 100,000 miles for Convoy of Hope, delivering tractor-trailers full of food and relief supplies across the United States.
“All the places we’ve been, to say they’re excited is an understatement,” he recounted. John pointed out that, when he makes a delivery to one of Convoy of Hope’s partners, he is always met with an overwhelming amount of gratitude.
“A lot of these places have never seen a Convoy truck before. They know of Convoy, but to see the truck on their property just amazes them. They’re so excited to have the product and be able to serve their communities.”
Allyson, a Guest of Honor at a Convoy of Hope Community Event, exemplified John’s description perfectly. “I had lost my job. And to be able to get free food and just even some necessities is really a huge help,” she said.
“This food is so helpful. We have so many families in need — especially right now with COVID — because they’re homeschooling and the kids aren’t leaving, and they don’t have money to up their grocery bill,” said Jackie, who also received food and relief supplies.
Many of our partners have gone out of their way to say thank you. Trevor Macaluso, a partner in Las Vegas, said, “Our partnership with Convoy has been critical because we have been able to serve the community through food distribution, we’ve been able to identify needs, and they’ve helped us to meet those needs.”
“Hope buys another day. Hope buys another week,” said Steve Miller, who partners with Convoy of Hope from Delaware. “And if that hope comes through a package of food, or if that hope comes from being surrounded by other people that are on the same path and are trying to overcome similar circumstances, just knowing that you’re not in it alone, that’s where we want to be.”
As Convoy of Hope continues to distribute meals, we’re filled with gratitude for the help and support we’ve received along the way. This milestone is an important one, and we couldn’t have reached it without your partnership.
December 8, 2020 | 12:30 p.m.
The COVID-19 pandemic dealt the entertainment industry a particularly devastating blow. Performers, those who traveled the convention circuit, stage and lighting professionals, and many others found themselves jobless shortly after the virus began to spread.
The situation proved particularly problematic for cities like Las Vegas — a place where the economy relies heavily on entertainment.
“They started losing work in March and they’re not expecting to go back to work until 2022,” Trevor Macaluso said. “That’s really hard, because then you’re now facing this pandemic, already unable to find food, already financially strapped, and now there’s not even a promise of a job when you’re done. You’re just unemployed. It was really hard on so many people in our community.”
Trevor began to notice an increasing need in his community, immediately beginning to look for ways to help. As the Missions Pastor at The Crossing, a local Vegas church, Trevor was already well-versed in community service.
In 2017, his church worked with Convoy of Hope to develop disaster response processes after the mass shooting in Las Vegas. Trevor stated that he and his team always prioritize partnerships with other organizations rather than trying to “reinvent the wheel.”
Convoy of Hope was proud to partner with The Crossing in response to the COVID-19 crisis.
“As soon as we shut down, there were no groceries here in Las Vegas,” Trevor said. “We are a service industry town, and so when there’s no work, I mean, there’s no work from home. It’s just not possible. And so people were hurting. Immediately we reached out to Convoy and said, ‘Hey, we could use help,’ and it was within days we had a tractor-trailer here full of food.”
Since March, Convoy of Hope has sent four loads of food and other necessities to The Crossing for distribution to the Las Vegas community. Trevor and his team distributed the food using drive-thru points of distribution and partnered with other local organizations who helped meet the needs of those struggling in the Las Vegas area.
Trevor hopes that even after the pandemic passes, Las Vegas locals will continue to serve one another in times of need.
“Our hope for the community moving forward is just a continuation of this awareness of needs in the community and that our ability to meet them is always there,” he said. “What I would hate is for us to get through this season of COVID-19, for stabilization to return, and people to then go back into a rut of, ‘Oh, somebody else is taking care of that.’”
Trevor expressed his gratitude toward Convoy of Hope for providing help and hope during this difficult time.
“Our partnership with Convoy has been critical because we have been able to serve the community through food distribution, we’ve been able to identify needs, and they’ve helped us to meet those needs.”
December 4, 2020 | 11:30 a.m.
When COVID-19 first became a concern across the U.S., many cities — including Orlando, Florida — adjusted to a new normal while in lockdown. Technology became both a source of comfort and an annoyance in many households. However, for the community that Cody Flickinger serves, technology became a lifeline.
Cody is the Outreach Coordinator for Faith Assembly in Orlando. In the early stages of the pandemic, Convoy of Hope sent tractor-trailers full of food and relief supplies to Faith Assembly for distribution to the greater Orlando area. Each load included 1,300 boxes of food.
Before most distribution events, people would eagerly line up for hours.
“We can get rid of 1,300 meals probably in two and a half hours,” Cody said. “There’ll be people waiting at the church since 5 a.m. knowing that we don’t start until 9 a.m.”
As Faith Assembly’s distribution events gained popularity, Cody and his team started to notice a new issue. “We’ll have so many people in line for a distribution day that we will for sure run out of food,” he said.
It was then that the “Need Help” form was first created. Those who came to the distribution site looking for help after the day’s supplies had run out, could scan a QR code that would direct them to the “Need Help” form. The form would then ask for their contact information and area of need so that church staff and volunteers could follow up with them after the event.
Those who were struggling with food security received a bag of groceries that included pasta, sauce, tuna, chicken, snacks, and produce — hand delivered with social distancing precautions. The form also includes options for users to indicate if they need hygiene products, help paying bills, or help running errands.
What began as an experiment in community relief quickly became a huge success.
“Before, when we were locked down and everything like that, the outreaches that we were doing were deemed essential. So we would get like 200 applicants a day,” Cody said. “This last week, I had checked the ‘Need Help’ form, and we have surpassed 6,000 families that have applied for help.”
Cody and his team have no plans to slow their efforts even after the pandemic is over.
“I think that even once COVID-19 is gone, this has really highlighted a need in our city,” he said. “It’s exciting to see exactly where this thing goes. And we’re going to continue to reach our city the best that we can along the way.”
November 18, 2020 | 3:20 p.m.
On November 17, 2013, an EF-4 tornado ripped through East Peoria, Illinois. It left many without homes, personal belongings, or power. Alan Dunlap, who was the associate pastor of a local church at the time, remembered the feeling of relief when Convoy of Hope arrived to help individuals in his community get back on their feet.
“At that time we had quite a devastating tornado that covered about 40 miles in length and about a mile wide,” he says. “I had a very positive experience then with how quickly Convoy of Hope was able to respond to the need that was there and with the things they were able to provide.”
Seven years later, Alan has found a new way to help his community, leading the women’s center at Adult & Teen Challenge of Illinois in Carlinville — a program center designed to help those struggling with addiction start a new life. The local Chamber of Commerce recently presented Alan and his team with the Difference Maker Award to celebrate the positive difference they have had on others in their area.
When Alan noticed that many in his city were struggling as a result of COVID-19, he decided that he and the residents of the women’s center needed to do something to help. “If we’re not willing to do that, we should probably take that award, box it back up, and mail it back to the Chamber of Commerce,” Alan says.
Alan reached out to Convoy of Hope to see what we could do to help. We provided them with 2,000 pounds of food to help the residents of Carlinville and surrounding communities. Alan first distributed food to participants of the Adult & Teen Challenge programs who found themselves in need. Afterward, he reached out to others who had been struggling to make ends meet.
Partnering with Convoy of Hope helped Alan turn his altruistic intentions into something larger, which made a real and tangible difference for others in the Carlinville area.
“It’s just been a wonderful experience to be able to literally have a ton of food to give away because of what Convoy of Hope was able to do as we partner together,” he says. “I want to thank Convoy of Hope for being a part of that process, helping enable us to do something. And I don’t see another way at this time that we could have done that.”
Your support of Convoy of Hope’s response to COVID-19 makes it possible to partner with people like Alan, and to help bring hope to communities like Carlinville.
October 29, 2020 | 3:40 p.m.
At Convoy of Hope, we want to see hope multiplied — to see hope spread and grow exponentially over time. Earlier this month, several Oklahoma residents witnessed this firsthand.
When The Kaleo Foundation, an Oklahoma City nonprofit, saw that COVID-19 had increased food-insecurity in nearby communities, they contacted Convoy of Hope to ask for help.
“This organization learned about Convoy of Hope through one of our other partners, Children’s Hunger Fund. They made a request to see if they could receive assistance in helping their community with needs due to the pandemic,” said Gwen Johnson, Convoy of Hope’s U.S. Disaster Services Partner Services Director. “This load consisted of 1,000 boxes that contained dairy, produce, and meat –– designed where a box can be given directly to a family.”
After the boxes were delivered, local partners sprang into action and helped distribute them to those in each community who needed food the most. Some volunteers traveled over 180 miles to gather and distribute boxes of food. Many were community leaders and representatives of local churches, while others just wanted to lend a helping hand.
“This food is so helpful,” said Jackie, a Kaleo volunteer who facilitates a group for grandparents raising their grandchildren. “We have so many families in need, especially right now with COVID. We appreciate it! Thank you so much.”
“I know that a lot of families are going to be blessed today,” said another volunteer, Maria Martinez, as she and her husband prepared to deliver the food they received. “So thank you very much. We appreciate this blessing.”
Maria explained that after they finished delivering boxes to those most in need and among their own community, they were excited to reach other people who may need help — extending hope to those families as well.
As hope multiplies, we watch one connection turn into another — creating a domino effect that changes even more lives. In this one collective effort, a single partnership turned into two, which turned into an entire community coming together and spreading light to neighbors in need.
October 22, 2020 | 4:30 p.m.
Convoy of Hope is both humbled and excited to share with you that we have distributed 150 million meals as part of our response to COVID-19.
Convoy is just one small part of this amazing accomplishment. We couldn’t have made it this far without the support of our amazing partners. From the very beginning of our COVID-19 response, they have stepped up alongside us to help those in need.
Midwest Food Bank is just one example. Because of their 10-year partnership with Convoy of Hope, they knew they could turn to us as soon as the pandemic began. Their community of Bloomington, Illinois, saw large layoffs and the disruption of school lunch programs.
All of this led to a dramatic increase in how many people came to them for food. With support from organizations like Convoy of Hope, they were able to keep up with the demand.
“[Convoy of Hope] is a great organization that has the same values as ours,” says Mike Hoffman, the Procurement & Logistics Director of Midwest Food Bank. “And the people that we deal with, they’re just fantastic. The help that we get through all the different products that they get us is invaluable. They’ve really been a godsend in many, many ways. We just really appreciate that partnership.”
Thanks to leaders like Mike and partners like Midwest Food Bank, Convoy of Hope has shown communities around the world that there are people that care about them and that they are not forgotten.
October 6, 2020 | 4:05 p.m.
We want to share some great news — we’ve officially distributed more than 125 million meals in response to COVID-19!
Because of your support and generosity, we’ve provided millions of people with a meal and hope right when they needed it. We couldn’t have done it without our incredible supporters, community partners, volunteers, and team members.
Thank you for being a part of this united act of compassion.
September 29, 2020 | 1:50 p.m.
In eastern Arizona, while COVID-19 occupied many residents’ thoughts, the White Mountain Apache Tribe found themselves with an additional concern: clean water.
“Because of the [high levels of] manganese, the water is often a brown-black color,” Jerald Altaha explained. Altaha is a tribal council member in Carrizo, a small community of the White Mountain Apache Tribe. “On a good day, it’s somewhat clear, but it’s not drinkable. I wouldn’t drink brown water.”
There are 32 homes in Carrizo, many of which are multigenerational or shared between families. Because of the pandemic, the tribe’s lack of potable water became an even greater concern.
“Knowing that we needed to have good, clean water to maintain good health, we were desperately looking for help,” Altaha explained.
For Carrizo, hope came in the form of five tractor-trailers full of clean drinking water. Each family in the community received a palette and a half of water to drink and to use for cooking. While distributing the water between households, Altaha was heartened by the gratitude with which the residents met him.
“I walked to this house and this elder lady opened the door,” he recounted. “She was so shocked, so proud, and so happy.”
After drying her tears and expressing how thankful she was, she joyfully pointed out the irony of the fact that Altaha would need to help her rearrange things in her home so that she would have room to store all the water after they were done unloading it from the forklift outside.
“I just want to say that I’m so thankful for Convoy of Hope,” Altaha concluded. “It definitely, definitely, definitely brings new hope and new life to people who have nowhere to turn.”
September 24, 2020 | 4:45 p.m.
Hunger looms large in many communities throughout the United States. The COVID-19 pandemic has shown just how quickly a family can fall out of food security and into the painful, stressful grind of wondering where their next meal is coming from.
That’s why organizations like the Ozarks Area Community Action Corporation (OACAC) have become even more vital to their communities.
“We acted really fast, and Convoy was great to help us,” says Kathy Moore, the Community Services Block Grant (CSBG) Project Coordinator at OACAC. “We’ve received three truckloads from them. We’ve had cereal, toilet paper, water, hygiene items, canned goods, pasta, snack products, and cleaning supplies.”
Kathy and her coworkers use these products in their People’s Pantries — a 24-hour “take-an-item-leave-an-item” pantry — that helps fight food insecurity in vulnerable neighborhoods.
“It’s a wooden box that our staff make sure is filled every week,” Katahy explains. “So if people need diapers, they can go and see if there are diapers. If they need to feed their family that night — to get them by until they can get groceries — they can go get food from the pantry instead.”
OACAC sees firsthand how the pandemic has forced many people into poverty, often for the first time.
“Our office is only open from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., so we thought these People’s Pantries were a way that people can come get assistance,” says Skyler Walker, the CSBG Assistant Director at OACAC. “Maybe those who have never asked for assistance before because they’ve never been in this situation, or maybe people who are just feeling a little embarrassed to come and ask. This is an opportunity for them to come in and help themselves. Food insecurity is a big thing.”
COVID-19 has proven another thing true: the power of partnership. “Convoy was truly on point for us,” Kathy says. “We really couldn’t have kept these pantries up and running if we hadn’t had Convoy.”
Convoy of Hope is proud to do what we can to make sure partners like OACAC can fulfill their missions and serve their communities.
September 14, 2020 | 4 p.m.
One hundred million is an enormous number. So when we say we’ve distributed 100 million meals, what exactly does that look like?
Here’s a video to give you some perspective.
September 9, 2020 | 4:30 p.m.
Our original goal was to provide 10 million meals to Americans hardest-hit by the coronavirus. We’re thrilled to announce that we’ve now distributed more than 100 million meals to people all over the world!
September 2, 2020 | 4:30 p.m.
When Heart of Monroe’s Executive Director Ginger Walle received an email from the Union County Public School Superintendent, she wasn’t sure how to help.
It was mid-March, the COVID-19 pandemic had shut down schools, and the district was asking for assistance. They needed help feeding families and getting food to students.
Heart for Monroe is a network of more than 65 churches and 35 nonprofits working together to address homelessness, hunger, education, and relationships in North Carolina. While food is a component of its programs, Heart for Monroe doesn’t have a massive supply that could fulfill the request the school district was making. Despite the difficulties, they quickly redirected their focus and started delivering food boxes to families and children.
Shortly after they started, Heart of Monroe received a call from the Council on Aging, asking if they could start immediately delivering food to the elderly.
“We added those requests to the food boxes that were going out. For two solid weeks — six days a week and sometimes even on Sunday afternoons — we were delivering mass quantities of food boxes,” says Ginger.
A few weeks into their food distribution, Heart for Monroe received food from Convoy of Hope and added drive-thru distribution to their efforts. With added products to their supply, Heart of Monroe got creative with their distributions and started creating themed food boxes for families. One night was a taco night dinner while another was a mashed potato day after receiving a truckload of potatoes from Convoy of Hope.
“We operate through donations,” Ginger explains. “Convoy of Hope, other churches and organizations, and even families have shown up at just the right time with donations as we are beginning to wonder, ‘Okay, what are we going to do next week?’ All the sudden, it’s like, ‘Oh, we have a truckload of food coming. This is exactly what we’re gonna do next week.’”
As of August 13, Heart of Monroe had delivered food boxes for 20 weeks. They are the first to say such a feat could never have happened without the support of strategic partnerships and relationships within their community. From the local police department and hospital, to area youth groups and the Chamber of Commerce, groups served alongside one another to provide hope.
Convoy of Hope is honored to partner with organizations like Heart of Monroe that have served their communities in response to COVID-19.
August 20, 2020 | 2:15 p.m.
Summer has been different for everyone this year, but one thing has remained constant: organizations are still working together to help those who need it most.
Thanks to many of Convoy of Hope’s partners and the support of our incredible donors, we’ve been able to help organizations, such as the Boys and Girls Club of the Greater Cook County Area in Adel, Georgia, in serving their communities.
Leigh Sears, CEO of the Boys and Girls Club of the Greater Cook County Area, said their numbers have suffered tremendously as a result of COVID-19. “This summer, we didn’t have but about 30-35 kids who signed up. Normally, we have 125.”
Despite low attendance numbers as a result of COVID-19, they are doing all it can to care for their community.
“There have been several outreaches that have allowed us to be an outreach to the community through Convoy of Hope,” says Sears.
Convoy of Hope sent about 4,000 gallons of milk to help supplement the program.
“One mom in particular… she just about cries every time [we see her],” Sears says.
The mother Sears was speaking about works at a local Wal-Mart and cares for her son, who is autistic. Leigh and her team have given her family food such as potatoes, milk, and pineapple to relieve a little of the pressure the pandemic has brought on.
“She’s said, ‘Leigh, this has helped us tremendously just to get through.’”
The Boys and Girls Club of the Greater Cook County Area has also changed their procedures to ensure everyone remains safe. Under the new procedures, children are no longer able to bring snacks from home. The club now provides kids with snacks like cereal, Cheez-Its, Rice Krispies Treats, and drinks.
“You all have provided our snacks through the whole summer,” Leigh says. “Because of Convoy of Hope, we have other partners that are helping us feed our kids … you just don’t realize the blessing you’ve been to our community — a huge blessing for our community. ”
We are confident the Boys and Girls Club of the Greater Cook County Area is in great hands, and we are privileged to count them among our COVID-19 response partners. Read more stories of hope and learn how you can donate to help at convoyofhope.org.
Ausust 14, 2020 | 11:40 p.m.
Convoy of Hope has delivered 50 million meals in response to COVID-19, and we aren’t stopping there.
When we think about the number of people who have needed those meals, the situation in the U.S. can seem quite bleak. But we’re not doing this alone. There are people out there — like Steve Huerta from Children’s Hunger Fund in San Antonio — who are helping us bring meals and the light of hope into places that need it.
“It’s been huge,” Steve said, when asked about how Convoy of Hope has been able to help his organization. “It’s allowed us to get resources to places that otherwise wouldn’t have resources.”
Convoy of Hope knows that all the food in the world can’t help people unless it gets to them. For that very reason, we resource our friends and partners to help them meet the needs in their communities.
Children’s Hunger Fund has been around for 27 years. The food that they provide throughout the state of Texas and far beyond is redistributed by churches and organizations who are in direct contact with people in need.
Convoy of Hope thanks our generous donors and corporate partners who make sharing food with organizations such as Children’s Hunger Fund possible — helping us maximize what we are given.
August 7, 2020 | 11:25 a.m.
Reconciliation Ministries is a South Carolina-based ministry that helps those suffering from addiction to experience life-changing freedom, hope, healing, and reconciliation to God, themselves, and others.
While food distribution isn’t something Reconciliation Ministries regularly does, they decided to act when the opportunity opened up to partner with Convoy of Hope.
Currently, Reconciliation Ministries has 33 students — men and women between the ages of 19 and 67 — enrolled in their program who are seeking recovery from substance abuse. Staff recognized the potential for their students to relapse due to lost jobs, unemployment benefits ending, or other difficulties many people are facing due to the coronavirus.
While continuing their regular programming and helping the students through their recovery journey, Reconciliation Ministry began an outreach to help those in their community who were suffering from the effects of the pandemic. They decided to host drive-thru distributions and distribute pallets of food to area churches and local organizations to help people in their community.
“There are cars lined up hours before the truck even gets here to get the food,” said Lucky Detty, Director of Operations at Reconciliation Ministries. “It’s been overwhelming to see that people will wait three hours to get a box of produce.”
Reconciliation Ministries is now in their fourth week of distributions, which have served hundreds of individuals and families with fresh produce.
Ashley Miller, Reconciliation Ministry Executive Director, said, “The really cool thing is our students in the program get to be part [of the distribution] every week. And so it’s just really cool to see it through their eyes and to see God providing us with an opportunity to serve the community.”
This outreach has enabled Reconciliation Ministries to distribute more than 250,000 pounds of food. It’s also taught students in the program the importance of serving while meeting a tangible need in their community.
“It’s been more than produce. It’s been more than just a box of food,” said Pastor Brian Poirier of Reconciliation Ministry. “It’s been connecting people with the church, connecting people with prayer, and connecting people with the Ministry of Reconciliation.”
Convoy of Hope is resourcing Reconciliation Ministry with food through our 50 Million Meals and Counting initiative, which empowers organizations of all sizes to make a difference in their communities.
July 31, 2020 | 1:45 p.m.
Who would have guessed the generosity that could come from sharing a peanut butter and jelly sandwich?
The city of Las Vegas was forced to adjust in massive ways when COVID-19 hit. Casinos and other major employers were made to shut down or scale back, which caused massive economic instability.
“We had 140 food banks on March 15,” says Victor Carusso, Director of the City Impact Center in Las Vegas. “Now, there’s 30. And there’s only four that have walk-in capability. We’re one of them.”
With estimates showing there could be as many as 200,000 evictions occurring in the city over the next several months, Vic turned to Convoy of Hope for help.
“We quickly sent a load of goods that included pancake mix, cereal, Spam, water, and paper towels. Vic smiles thinking about that delivery. “You know, I never thought I’d be so excited about a shipment. But oh, it was magnificent.”
A few weeks later, Convoy of Hope contacted City Impact Center again to see if they would take a truckload of pre-made peanut butter and jelly sandwiches. The sandwiches have to be refrigerated, and City Impact Center didn’t have the capacity for the whole truckload.
They contacted Three Square, another large charity in Las Vegas, to see if they had the space. “I said, ‘Hey, listen, I’m getting sent a truck of peanut butter jelly sandwiches … we don’t have the capacity, so can I give you half of it? And they said, ‘Yes, absolutely.’”
Later in the week, Three Square called Vic to say they wanted to make sure that City Impact Center had the capacity to accept product that needs to be refrigerated in the future. Then they bought the City Impact Center a 45-foot refrigerated truck and 10 brand new stainless steel freezers.
“They showed up in the crates, right from the factory,” Vic says. “And we just plugged them in yesterday. Isn’t that beautiful?”
The power of sharing, even something as simple as peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, sparked a chain reaction of kindness and generosity in Las Vegas. And in the end, people were helped, and relationships were strengthened.
Who can you share a PB&J with today?
July 28, 2020 | 4:45 p.m.
Glaring summer heat and above-100-degree temperatures didn’t stop more than 500 Guests of Honor and 140 volunteers from attending the Convoy of Hope Community Event in Evansville, Indiana.
To better serve communities during the COVID-19 pandemic, Community Events decided to change its format to a point of distribution (POD) model. But even though the day was without the usual tents and activities, needs were met and joy was shared.
Andrea and Tom had to walk to the drive-thru because their car had been totaled in an accident the day before. “We’re on Social Security, so we pay our bills and try to make ends meet, but we struggle [to get food] two to three weeks each month.” says Andrea.
After waiting in line, volunteers loaded their arms with groceries and household supplies. “We’re very thankful that these organizations get together for us because there is more than us that need it,” Tom says.
Event in Numbers
|Bags of Groceries Distributed||5,000|
|Gardens in a Bag Distributed||1,200|
|Pairs of Bombas Socks Distributed||6,000|
July 24, 2020 | 11 a.m.
We are celebrating reaching 50 million meals — thanks to people like you — but our work is not done yet!
July 23, 2020 | 4:10 p.m.
When COVID-19 first appeared, Convoy of Hope did what we do best, which is responding to disasters. And over the last five months, the pandemic has proven to be nothing short of that. Between the effects of the virus itself and the economic impact, people across the U.S. and around the world are suffering.
But there was something else on the move. A tide of compassion that moved many to action. You — our faithful supporters — have given as donors, hauled grocery bags as volunteers, and prayed for us as friends. Because of you, the people who are in the midst of hardship have received help and hope.
Watch this message from Convoy of Hope President Hal Donaldson as he shares landmark news regarding our response to the coronavirus.
July 16, 2020 | 5 p.m.
Master Sergeant Julio Lopez’s hand is broken, but he’s itching to help move the cargo being delivered to Whiteman Air Force Base. He describes himself as a “Port Dawg,” and today he is helping Convoy of Hope.
“Whether it’s people or bombs, bullets or beans, we put it on the plane and ship it anywhere in the world whenever the U.S. government, the military, or one of our partners needs us to.”
In coordination with the U.S. Embassy in El Salvador and the U.S. Southern Command, Convoy of Hope and its partners have joined together under the umbrella of the Department of Defense’s Denton Program to deliver food and medical supplies to El Salvador in response to Tropical Storm Amanda and COVID-19.
The Denton Program gives non-government organizations in the U.S. the ability to use the additional space on military cargo planes to deliver humanitarian relief to countries in need.
Two tractor-trailers, filled with more than 63,000 pounds of food and hygiene kits, were unloaded at Whiteman Air Force Base near Kansas City, Missouri, and flown to El Salvador. Once there, our local team will deliver the goods to thousands of people who are in desperate need. The rice, beans, powdered milk, sugar, flour, canned tomatoes, dried fruit, and hygiene kits will sustain those whose lives have been turned upside down by recent events.
Tropical Storm Amanda left a deadly wake of destruction across El Salvador in late May. Responding with humanitarian aid was further complicated by COVID-19. Convoy of Hope’s team in El Salvador immediately jumped into action, delivering food and supplies. Thanks to the power of partnership, an airplane full of additional relief is now on its way to assist in their good work.
As the last pallets are unloaded, Master Sergeant Lopez and the team of soldiers working in the warehouse have played their part in helping thousands of people in El Salvador.
We at Convoy of Hope have seen partnership move mountains in the face of adversity, and we are thankful for everyone who comes alongside us to make it happen.
July 9, 2020 | 2:15 p.m.
Since the beginning of COVID-19, the Navajo Nation has experienced what Pastor Nathan Lynch called a “perfect storm” of difficulties on the reservation.
Self-quarantine is nearly impossible when many people on the Navajo reservation are living in multi-generational households. One third of homes live a traditional way without running water in the home. Only 13 grocery stores serve an area of 27,000 square miles and a population of more than 173,000.
The situation quickly became dire. Pastor Lynch was asked to serve on the Navajo Nation Christian Response Team (NNCRT) to help coordinate food and water distribution.
“As soon as I found out what they were doing, that’s when I reached out to Convoy,” he said. “We’re gonna need some serious help because this isn’t a go to Wal-Mart and buy a couple of bags of groceries and take it off to somebody.”
The need for food and water was critical for several weeks. Convoy of Hope delivered multiple tractor-trailer loads of water and food like Spam, beans, rice, and produce.
Because of the enormous size of Navajo Nation and the lack of transportation to get to where food would be distributed, the NNCRT worked with pastors in 110 communities across the reservation to deliver boxes of food — door to door — to people who needed it most.
One pastor who delivered food in the Flagstaff area went to a house and was told the family had been without food for three days. Another woman told the pastor she was glad he showed up when he did, because she had just finished her last bit of food in the house and didn’t know what she was going to do.
Through the collaboration with Pastor Lynch and the Navajo Nation, Convoy of Hope also provided water and food to the White Mountain Apache Reservation.
Convoy of Hope has also distributed food and resources to other Native American tribes and groups during our COVID-19 response, including the Paiute Indian Tribe of Utah, the Zuni Reservation, the Ramah Navajo Reservation, and the Partnership with Native Americans in South Dakota and Arizona.
Convoy of Hope is continually moved by the tragedy that is taking place in underserved areas of the country. We are committed to serving as many as we can for as long as we can. Our hearts go out to these people in this desperate time. Thank you for partnering with us to make this possible.
July 6, 2020 | 11:35 a.m.
The perimeter of the U.S. is approximately 12,500 miles. The circumference of Earth is 24,901 miles. The distance to the moon is 238,900 miles. All of these distances are hard to imagine, but the amount of effort it would take to traverse them is unarguably significant.
That’s why when we can say Convoy of Hope trucks* have traveled more than 774,000 miles during our “Beyond 10 Million Meals” initiative, it’s something to be proud of!
Those on Convoy of Hope’s Driving and Supply Chain teams have worked tirelessly to make sure the product we receive is processed, loaded, and distributed effectively and efficiently. Their hard work has led to more than 40 million meals being distributed to people living in urban and underserved communities.
We appreciate their sacrifice and are thankful for their willingness to help others during this global pandemic.
*This includes trucks owned by Convoy of Hope and trucks we contract through third-parties.
July 2, 2020 | 11 a.m.
Convoy of Hope was grateful to work with our partners at Straight Gate Church in Detroit, Michigan, in showing kindness to members of their community hit hard by COVID-19. In one day, volunteers distributed 25,000 pounds of groceries and supplies to those suffering from the economic downturn caused by the virus.
Take a look at what we accomplished together, and watch the video below to hear from the Guests of Honor they served.
June 30, 2020 | 8:35 a.m.
Convoy of Hope’s tractor-trailers have continued rolling across the nation to provide hope where it’s needed most. To date, we’ve distributed more than 40 million meals in the U.S. and millions more internationally.
Watch the latest update from Convoy President Hal Donaldson.
June 29, 2020 | 4:10 p.m.
Convoy of Hope has some of the greatest supporters in the world, and that includes our friends Vance McDonald and Ben Rothlisburger of the Pittsburgh Steelers. The Steelers’ “Trucks of Hope” campaign is raising money to deliver five tractor-trailers over five months to serve 5,000 families throughout the greater Pittsburgh region.
Watch the video below to see how the “Trucks of Hope” campaign is working with Convoy of Hope to bring relief to those living in the greater Pittsburgh area.
June 25, 2020 | 2:20 p.m.
Convoy of Hope is delivering food and resources to partners and churches across the country — no matter how big or small the organization.
FosterAdopt Connect provides foster and adoptive children with a stable, loving, and nurturing family environment. Based in Missouri, they serve 29 counties throughout the state.
Sammy’s Window, a program of FosterAdopt Connect, supports foster families with clothing, food, toys, and more. Convoy of Hope has partnered with Sammy’s Window for a number of years, supplying them with food, cleaning supplies, socks, and other resources. Last year, Sammy’s Window served nearly 5,000 kids.
“Convoy of Hope always makes us feel like we’re important,” says Mark Hay, Sammy’s Window’s Direct Service Coordinator. “I know we’re not the biggest organization in the world. And it would be easy sometimes to pass off the little guys. But I’ve never felt that [with Convoy of Hope]. I always feel like we’re just as important as anyone else when we have a request.”
When the COVID-19 pandemic hit, the need Sammy’s Window saw within their communities increased exponentially. Due to statewide stay-at-home orders, layoffs, and school closures, many of the families they serve couldn’t find affordable childcare options. Those extra expenses meant many of them weren’t sure how to feed and care for their kids.
Normally, families can visit Sammy’s Window once a month to get items they need. Because of COVID-19, those turned into weekly visits that took place in a parking lot. In June alone, they had 1,400 people come through and pick up food and other supplies provided by Convoy of Hope and other partners.
“People have really been very pleased,” says Mark. “I think a lot of them are just glad to get out of the house and see another human being. But there’s been a lot of people who have just been very, very grateful. They’ve told me that they didn’t know what they were going to do or how they were going to stretch their dollars, especially their food dollars, during this time.”
With Missouri ranking 49th out of 50 states in the amount of support given to foster families, the work that Sammy’s Window does is particularly important — especially during a time of crisis. Convoy of Hope is thrilled to support organizations like FosterAdopt Connect and the important work they do in the vulnerable communities they serve.
June 23, 2020 | 4:30 p.m.
Last week, Convoy of Hope joined with the community of Adel, Georgia, to bring help and hope to others during the COVID-19 pandemic. There are no food pantries in Adel, a town of about 6,000 people, and the economic effects of COVID-19 are easy to see.
Along with ready-to-eat goods and household supplies, Convoy of Hope distributed fresh dairy and meat products out of refrigerated trucks because of our distribution partnership with the USDA.
“I talked with several people that drove 30 or 40 miles to come here and get food,” said Eric Gordon, an employee at Convoy of Hope. “The line of cars stretched for 1 to 2 miles all throughout the day.”
By the end of the event, more than 830 guests — 15% of the rural community’s population — attended. More volunteers than could be accommodated showed up and had to be turned away to ensure social distancing. In the end, nearly 50 volunteers from six participating churches worked with the Convoy of Hope team to distribute goods, pass out lunches, and hand out small toys to children.
June 22, 2020 | 4:45 p.m.
The U.S., along with most of the world, has entered its fourth consecutive month of grappling with the crisis caused by COVID-19. We at Convoy of Hope have been working diligently to make sure communities — both domestic and international — are fed.
Response in Numbers
|Meals Served in the U.S.||30 million+|
|Churches, Organizations & Operational Partners in the U.S.||1,200+|
|Meals Served Internationally||11 million+|
|International Churches, Organizations & Operational Partners||1,000+|
Despite tripling the original goal of our Beyond 10 Million Meals initiative, there are still millions of people who are in need because of COVID-19. That’s why we’ll never stop in our fight against hunger. We’re committed to assisting cities, states, and nations alike as we navigate the ongoing pandemic.
June 17, 2020 | 5:15 p.m.
Last Thursday, after helping distribute meals to more than 800 families at Martinsville Speedway, Frank Senkinc got to celebrate his eighth anniversary with Convoy of Hope as a driver by taking his truck around the speedway eight times.
The event at Martinsville Speedway was one of several events held at NASCAR tracks where relief was distributed to individuals and community partners like food banks.
We’re thankful for all our drivers and the amazing work they do in helping us fulfill our mission. So far, Convoy of Hope’s drivers have traveled tens of thousands of miles to deliver much-needed food, water, and relief supplies to 41 states.
June 15, 2020 | 2:30 p.m.
As part of our “Beyond 10 Million Meals” COVID-19 response, Convoy of Hope is delivering USDA Farmers to Families Food Boxes across the U.S. to bring meals to people who need it most.
According to the USDA’s website, the Farmers to Families Food Box program is distributing agricultural products to those in need by purchasing up to $3 billion in fresh produce, dairy, and meat products. Convoy of Hope is working with suppliers to deliver the family-sized boxes to churches and partners who then distribute them locally.
Garden City First Assembly of God in Garden City, Kansas, is one of the churches who recently received a tractor-trailer load of these food boxes. Pastor Nathan Sheridan had been on Convoy of Hope’s list to receive food and supplies for several weeks when the USDA load of produce became available. The load they received was distributed among multiple churches in six different communities in western Kansas.
“Thank you to all of those who saw this as a potential for area communities to resource families in need,” said Pastor Sheridan. “No one understands the need like those with boots on the ground.”
Garden City is a diverse community with 60% Hispanic population and a large Somalian population. Pastor Sheridan knew that the Somali refugees in their neighborhood needed resources due to recent furloughs and layoffs from local meat plants. The layoffs and furloughs fell just before Ramadan, and the Somali community was struggling.
One hundred thirty boxes filled with fresh produce were taken to a Somali community at an apartment complex — within one hour, 100 of the boxes were distributed to people impacted by the pandemic.
Pastor Sheridan knew that the quality of what they were distributing would speak volumes to those receiving it.
“This has been incredible for us to receive product that’s not second class. This is product that you would purchase at any major store. It’s phenomenal product, it’s fresh and beyond what I imagined. This has been amazing. The leverage you have given the local community to meet these needs is phenomenal.”
June 11, 2020 | 3 p.m.
Look at all the good you’ve helped us do as we respond to the needs arising from the COVID-19 pandemic.
June 9, 2020 | 10 p.m.
The Joey Logano Foundation, the NASCAR Foundation, and Elevation Outreach have recently partnered with Convoy of Hope to distribute food and relief supplies at racetracks across the country.
On Thursday, June 11, they will hold a drive-thru distribution at Martinsville Speedway with the goal of providing 40,000 pounds of food and supplies to approximately 1,000 families at NASCAR’s oldest track.
“After seeing how impactful Darlington went, we quickly moved forward and scheduled our next event with Convoy of Hope in Martinsville,” said Logano.
Convoy of Hope has already distributed food and supplies at three race tracks — Charlotte Motor Speedway, Darlington Raceway, and Evergreen Speedway — during the COVID-19 pandemic.
June 4, 2020 | 10:55 a.m.
When Convoy of Hope started our Beyond 10 Million Meals initiative, we said we would do as much as we can for as long as we can to help those in need. Watch this message from Convoy of Hope President Hal Donaldson sharing about our progress.
June 3, 2020 | 5 p.m.
Since the start of Convoy of Hope’s response to COVID-19, Hugh has driven more than ten thousand miles. As one of our volunteer truck drivers, Hugh has delivered relief from Florida to Virginia to Michigan.
Today is his wedding anniversary. Luckily, his wife of 41 years is his co-pilot, sitting beside him in the cab of his truck. More than 25,000 pounds of relief supplies are in the tractor-trailer behind them as they make their way to Pensacola, Florida.
Hundreds of miles pass by, and Hugh is excited to be delivering help. When he retired from the military, Hugh found a place serving with Convoy of Hope and has been driving for the organization the last seven years. The situation with COVID-19 is unlike any he’s experienced with Convoy.
“The economics of the situation are what really drives me,” Hugh says. “Just feeling and seeing people’s economic situation so drastically deteriorate so rapidly. You know, it just really hurts.”
One hotel owner that Hugh met along the way had to lay off 24 of her employees, leaving just herself and two others to run the hotel.
“There was just complete devastation of their economy and their income. And that’s the hard part for me,” says Hugh. “I can’t imagine a young family that works paycheck to paycheck, losing those paychecks. How do they feed themselves and pay their electric bill?”
Hugh embodies the heart behind Convoy of Hope’s drive to distribute millions of meals to people in need around the country.
When asked how it feels to help during this time, Hugh chuckled and responded, “This job, helping people this way — it’s just got a huge amount of gratification and appreciation. You know, the people really, really appreciate what we’re doing.”
Thanks to you and our team of drivers — some of whom celebrate their anniversaries on the road — Convoy of Hope continues delivering help and hope in response to COVID-19.
June 2, 2020 | 5:15 p.m.
Convoy of Hope has delivered more than 17 million meals across the U.S. during our response to COVID-19.
Thanks to you, families reeling from the health and economic impact of the pandemic have received food, water, cleaning supplies, and other relief items during this time of great need.
Click here to see a gallery of photos of help in action from Convoy of Hope.
June 1, 2020 | 11:40 a.m.
COVID-19 has changed the entire world. At Convoy of Hope, we are adapting our initiatives to best meet the needs brought on by the pandemic. So, for the rest of 2020, Community Events has restructured to a point of distribution (POD) model instead of our normal structure that promotes large gatherings of people. This helps us maintain social distance, follow guidelines put out by the CDC, and better ensure the safety of our staff and guests.
Community Events recently conducted a drive-thru POD at Central Assembly of God Church in Springfield, Missouri. Watch the video below to see the incredible impact it made on the local community.
May 28, 2020 | 4:15 p.m.
According to the latest data, if the Navajo Nation were a state, it would have the highest rate of coronavirus cases per capita.
“As of yesterday, we had over 4,700 cases of COVID-19,” says Tanya Riggs, who works at Tuba City Regional Health Care on the Navajo Nation Reservation in Arizona.
Tuba City is an important location for those living in the area. If someone needs medical attention and can’t receive it at the health center, they have to travel 75 miles to get help. Treating 4,700 cases of COVID-19 means the staff have all been working harder than ever before.
“For people like myself, who are normally an administrative position, we’re having to step forward and help our clinical brothers and sisters as far as helping them with screening,” says Tanya. “We’ve been posing as runners, helping in the triage tent, helping direct community members to different areas.”
Convoy of Hope was able to connect with the health care center and send them a tractor-trailer filled with bottled water. One pallet was used for nursing staff, those covering the front lines in the ICU, and those taking care of patients. The remaining pallets were used for all staff assisting in the red zone areas, inpatient areas, and screening areas.
The strong ties of community have made the stress and the loss caused by COVID-19 that much harder to deal with.
“It’s been really hard losing good friends,” says Tanya. “Some were single parents of young children, and they’re now no longer with us. But you know, their spirit and memory continues on. And so it’s been emotional highs and lows. But in times like this, when we’re able to celebrate those highs as far as meeting new friends … it really means a lot to us.”
There is still much work that needs to be done to combat this pandemic. As more people contract the virus and feel the economic pains it is inflicting, Convoy of Hope is committed to doing as much as we can for as long as we can.
May 27, 2020 | 3:45 p.m.
Helping others is hard to do when you’re hurting. As the number of COVID-19 infections and deaths continue to rise around the world, compassion fatigue may be setting in for many who are asking, “Where can I find the strength to love my neighbor when I’ve been affected, too?”
The staff at Hillsong NYC was faced with that very problem. And Convoy of Hope was honored to be part of the solution.
As we continue distributing food and relief supplies through our Beyond 10 Million Meals initiative, we’re here to help you in your time of need. Everyone needs support during these times — especially those who are pouring into others.
May 21, 2020 | 2:30 p.m.
We have great news to share about our Beyond 10 Million Meals initiative. Watch this video to hear the latest from Convoy of Hope President Hal Donaldson and Vice President of International Program Heath Adamson.
There is still much work to be done. But with your help, we know we can continue being part of the solution when it comes to COVID-19.
May 19, 2020 | 1:45 p.m.
Several NASCAR drivers have teamed up with Convoy of Hope to provide much needed meals and relief supplies during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Thanks to Driver Joey Logano and The Joey Logano Foundation, The NASCAR Foundation, and Elevation Church, another distribution took place at Darlington Raceway on Monday, May 18. At that event, more than 30,000 pounds of food, water, and hygiene supplies were distributed. Hundreds of cars lined up to receive help.
Driver Ty Dillon and his wife, Haley, helped sponsor tractor-trailer loads of product that will be distributed at tracks around the country. Elevation Church in Charlotte, North Carolina, helped distribute the first load of 30,000 pounds of goods at Charlotte Motor Speedway on Wednesday, May 13. Another tractor-trailer of food and relief supplies will arrive at Evergreen Speedway in Washington on June 5.
Local volunteers at each of these events are implementing contactless point of distribution models to ensure the safety of staff and our Guests of Honor.
May 18, 2020 | 11:45 a.m.
We’ve always known at Convoy of Hope that we can’t beat hunger on our own. We need partners — businesses, individuals, churches, community services, and health organizations — to help us end the cycles of poverty and hunger occurring around the world. That’s never been more true than now during the COVID-19 pandemic.
We have enjoyed important relationships with incredible partners over the years, one of which is with Hormel Foods. When they were looking for ways to help others suffering from the coronavirus outbreak, they turned to Convoy of Hope to help them make it happen.
May 14, 2020 | 4:45 p.m.
We want to take a few minutes to show you the positive impact you’ve had on communities across the nation.
Each news story represents thousands of people whose lives were changed because you stepped out with us to demonstrate compassion. But the need is still great — perhaps even greater than when we first embarked on this mission. We may have passed the 10 million meal mark, but there is still much to do. With your help, we are making a true and lasting difference during this pandemic.
May 13, 2020 | 2:20 p.m.
Convoy of Hope has delivered help from coast to coast in response to COVID-19. With your help, our Beyond 10 Million Meals initiative is growing by the day.
May 12, 2020 | 2:15 a.m.
The COVID-19 pandemic has changed the entire world. At Convoy of Hope, we are adapting our initiatives to best meet the needs brought on by the pandemic. So, for the rest of 2020, Community Events has restructured to a point of distribution (POD) model instead of our normal structure that promotes large gatherings of people.
This helps us maintain social distancing, follow guidelines put out by the CDC, and better ensure the safety of our team members and guests. Community Events recently conducted a drive-thru POD at Central Assembly of God Church in Springfield, Missouri. The distribution started at noon, but the first car lined up at 8:30 a.m., greatly anticipating what was to come.
Cars were lined up for 10 blocks by 11 a.m., so we opened the line early. When volunteers apologized for the wait, many of our Guests of Honor said they didn’t mind and were just thankful for the help.
Event in Numbers
|Guests of Honor Served||1,173|
|Bags of Groceries Distributed||4,860|
|Pairs of Bombas Socks Distributed||7,500|
|Super Smoothies Distributed||9,000|
|Gardens in a Bag Distributed||1,000|
Despite living in turbulent times, Convoy of Hope is still committed to serving vulnerable communities all around the United States. Thank you for your continued support and partnership during these unprecedented times.
May 11, 2020 | 10:45 p.m.
Convoy of Hope continues to supply people all over the U.S. with food and supplies through our Beyond 10 Million Meals initiative.
Here’s the latest update from Stacy Lamb, our Senior Director of U.S. Disaster Services.
We can’t respond to a need this big all on our own. Our network of partners — people just like you — are making our work possible all across the nation. We’re sincerely thankful for your support.
May 7, 2020 | 9:48 a.m.
In a world of social distancing and quarantine, it doesn’t take long for loneliness to set in. When daily life is suddenly turned upside down — with no sign of returning to normal — it can feel like a hopeless situation.
But you’re not alone. Convoy of Hope partners like Pastors Judah and Chelsea Smith and their congregation at Churchome are reaching out, offering hope and help to as many as they can during the pandemic.
Watch this video with Churchome CEO David Kroll to hear about how hope is being spread in the communities Churchome serves.
With your help, we hit our initial goal of distributing 10 million meals in response to COVID-19. But the need is still great, and millions of people still need help. Thank you for standing with us in making sure we deliver both.
May 5, 2020 | 8:10 a.m.
LOS ANGELES, CA — While many churches and nonprofits have been ready and willing to help during the COVID-19 crisis, no one has ever addressed a pandemic before. Even well-established groups were being faced with need on a level they’ve never seen before.
As one of the largest food banks in Los Angeles, the LA Dream Center knew it would keep serving those who needed food. But COVID-19 forced them to work on a bigger scale.
Watch the video below to see what they’ve accomplished and how Convoy of Hope has helped them do it.
May 4, 2020 | 4:30 p.m.
Communities continue to rally together to help those in vulnerable areas who have been affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. This last weekend, members from James River Church partnered with Convoy of Hope and conducted a multi-site distribution. Watch the video below to see the difference they helped make in the lives of thousands of people.
May 1, 2020 | 8:12 a.m.
We are thrilled to share great news about our 10 Million Meals initiative. Watch the latest announcement from Convoy of Hope President Hal Donaldson.
As Hal said, this isn’t the end. The need is still massive, and we still have work to do. We’ve done it before, and — together — we’ll do it again.
April 30, 2020 | 1 p.m.
You’ve heard the phrase, “If life gives you lemons, make lemonade.” But 8-year-old Benjamin may have coined a new saying that’s very applicable to the time we find ourselves in: “When life gives you a bad haircut, raise money for a good cause.”
After several weeks in quarantine due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Benjamin needed a haircut. But he and his parents decided to have some fun with the situation. His mom and dad said if he could raise $500 for a charity of his choice, they would let his little sister cut and color his hair any way she wanted.
So $550 later, he was proudly sporting a bright red mohawk. And he decided that Convoy of Hope would be the organization to receive his donation.
Even though he only kept his haircut for a day, Benjamin’s contribution will make a lasting difference in the lives of the people he helped through our 10 Million Meals initiative. We’re so thankful for him and the thousands of other donors like him who have made contributions big and small to help those in need.
April 28, 2020 | 11:40 a.m.
When tragedy struck the community of Teaneck, New Jersey, the team at the local food pantry was ready to give up. But, because of people like you who continue partnering with us, we were able to deliver supplies and restore their hope.
April 27, 2020 | 4:15 p.m.
People’s Church in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, has been doing everything they can to help those in their community affected by COVID-19. Watch the video below from Senior Pastor Herbert Cooper to discover why he and his church look to Convoy of Hope in times of disaster.
April 24, 2020 | 9 a.m.
With your help, Convoy of Hope is providing essential workers with the simple tools they need to stay safe. Watch how we assisted COMPACT Family Services and their caseworkers.
April 23, 2020 | 5:05 p.m.
CAMBELLSVILLE, KY — This week is National Volunteer Week. We at Convoy of Hope can’t adequately express how thankful we are for the fleet of volunteers who help us fulfill our mission every day. Without them, Convoy of Hope could never help others on the scale we do today.
This is especially true right now during the COVID-10 pandemic and our 10 Million Meals initiative. People like Brooklyn Trammell are making sure that we reach our goal of distributing 10 million meals to those in need.
Brooklyn helps lead the Captivate outreach program at 3Trees Church in Campbellsville, Kentucky. The church is an important part of her community, known for their grocery assistance program and community service. Most of the work done by Captivate — whose motto is “Find needs and meet them” — is done through the hard work of volunteers. “We’re good at getting creative with finding ways to meet needs,” she says with pride.
That’s exactly what they’re doing during the COVID-19 pandemic. Their creative solutions have involved handing out care packages that include water, canned goods, bulk baking supplies, and boxed cereals provided by Convoy of Hope. Volunteers from the church gathered — at the appropriate social distance —to bag groceries. They handed them out via a drive-thru distribution at the church and left bags on the porches of their elderly or immuno-suppressed neighbors who couldn’t leave their homes.
One particular interaction stuck out to Brooklyn. “We delivered some groceries to an elderly lady. She was in tears when we arrived. She told us she only had two cans of food left in her whole house. Now she has the food she needs to get through the next little bit.”
Because of amazing volunteers and partners like Brooklyn and 3Trees Church, Convoy of Hope is making a difference in the lives of people all around the U.S. during the coronavirus outbreak.
April 22, 2020 | 2:11 p.m.
In December, we posted a story that included an update about a woman named Tomasa. She attended a Community Event we held in Fort Worth in 2017. She picked up a Garden in a Bag and then came back to the Fort Worth Community Event in 2019 to get more seeds. She also spoke with someone about how she could grow the size of her garden.
Tomasa had no idea how much her garden would matter just a few months later.
Soon after stay-at-home orders were given in her state, Tomasa — a home-healthcare worker — was told to stay home by her employer. But, despite the uncertainty, Tomasa says the pandemic’s effects haven’t all been negative.
“Beside my job, I’m doing okay. It’s just upsetting my routine. For me, it has brought me closer to my family. It’s sad because people are dying, but it’s good because I see more families coming together.”
She spoke to Convoy of Hope over the phone as she pulled weeds in her garden. This year, she’s growing tomatoes, cucumbers, kale, lettuce, squash, and radishes.
“A garden is therapy,” she says. “Gardening relaxes my stress. It’s exercise, too. It’s beautiful, because you’re growing your own food. Whatever you plant, you’re getting good nutrition. You plant the seed and see it grow.”
Even more than just personal benefits, Tomasa thinks agriculture and gardening are answers to the big problems people are facing right now.
“The virus is teaching me we need to go back to the basics. [Gardening] helps families produce their own food for their table. There are a lot of poor families. If they are gardening, they will save money. If everyone had a garden in the front and backyard or in every neighborhood, can you imagine? Imagine how productive your community could be.”
Her garden also gives her a unique opportunity to be compassionate to those around her. “Last year, I got a lot of tomatoes, and I gave them to my neighbors, too. You share with people. That’s the beauty of gardening.”
Tomasa is teaching both her granddaughter-in-law and great-grandson how to garden, and she wants to start her own community garden. She thinks that, by bringing her community together at a community garden, they would feel united in a time when they would otherwise feel isolated.
“If you’re bored during quarantine, you need to garden.” Tomasa said. “If you don’t know how, I’ll teach you.”
April 21, 2020 | 9:05 a.m.
Our friends at Churchome — led by Lead Pastors Judah and Chelsea Smith — recently made an incredible $1 million donation to Convoy of Hope’s COVID-19 response.
Watch as the tractor-trailer filled with food and emergency supplies arrives at their campus.
Our march to 10 Million Meals continues because of partners like you and Churchome. Together, we’re spreading hope in the midst of this coronavirus crisis.
April 20, 2020 | 2:50 p.m.
It may be a skeleton crew, but the warehouse team at our World Distribution Center is hard at work (with safe social-distancing) loading trucks for distribution. They’ve been instrumental in getting supplies delivered to communities affected by COVID-19.
April 17, 2020 | 11 a.m.
Your continued support helps people — just like Cindy — all around the United States.
Cindy was wondering how she was going to make it through the new world she found herself in. A single mother of two middle-school boys, she and her family had already experienced enormous change after they moved to New Jersey from Puerto Rico. She suddenly had to figure out how to work from home while homeschooling the boys … and since the at-school lunches they depended on were uncertain, how to also provide food for her family.
“I’m trying to take care of myself,” she said. “Because I think, ‘If I get sick, my sons will get sick because it’s only the three of us.’ But I stopped watching the news because I was having anxiety. Every single day, it’s the same thing.”
Cindy was confronting the same serious question most people in the U.S. were facing. How could she possibly take care of the people around her when grocery stores are emptying and no one can leave their home?
But a week or so after they’d been forced to stay inside, Cindy received a text message from her son: “WE GOT TOILET PAPER.”
It was followed by a picture of a letter and a kit filled with essentials — juice, soup, granola bars, and the all-important rolls of toilet paper.
Cindy, who had been asked to come back into work that day, texted him back. “I asked, ‘Is that [from] the school?’ And he said, ‘No, there’s a letter.’ So he sent me a picture of the letter and I read it. The letter was from a pastor.”
A local church had supplied the school Cindy’s sons attended with the kits, which were filled with goods provided by Convoy of Hope.
Cindy was beyond grateful.
“This is so unexpected. We really needed [the supplies]. When I saw [the kit], I thought, ‘Oh, these are angels from Heaven.’ Because sometimes you need something, but you don’t tell anyone. And then you look up and say, ‘Oh, God, you were listening to me. I didn’t speak, but you were listening to me. You know what I needed.’”
It’s also helped Cindy show her sons what it means to be kind and stay calm in the middle of a crisis.
“I like to say thank you every time that someone does something good for others. And I’m trying to teach my sons to be grateful. I feel as long as kids see their parents managing a situation like this and in a calm way, they will feel safe and they will not be worried. It depends on us.”
April 16, 2020 | 5:37 p.m.
We’ve always believed it was part of our responsibility at Convoy of Hope to make our partners the “heroes” in their communities. Especially now, in the midst of a global pandemic, people are looking to their local support systems for help in meeting their overwhelming needs.P
astor Matt Ellis at Tower Hill Church in Auburn, New Hampshire, felt called to help feed the children in his community before COVID-19 upended everyone’s lives.
“A young woman in our church told me that she remembered, as a kid, eating breakfast and lunches at school and not eating over the weekend. My heart breaks for those kids.”
As soon as the coronavirus cases started appearing in the U.S., Matt contacted Convoy of Hope. They received a truck filled with food and supplies and immediately started finding ways to get goods to everyone they could — regardless of their background.
“Many of the people we’re helping are not used to being the ones that need help.”
Tower Hill has been intentional in their partnerships with local schools, both large and small, but they quickly found themselves supplying other ministries and local organizations with supplies the schools didn’t use or need.
“We sent sanitation wipes to a local hospital and care packages to three police departments. That wasn’t part of the original plan.”
Their desire to serve and help others has formed new relationships in their community. And, though the expectations they had about how they could help were eclipsed by the need, they rose to the challenge. And people are taking notice.
One of the women who received help through the distribution said it best: “This church isn’t just talking about the problem. They’re being part of the solution.”
April 15, 2020 | 9:20 a.m.
Clear your calendar tomorrow and preorder “Jump Shot: The Kenny Sailor Story.” Proceeds will help benefit Convoy of Hope and our 10 Million Meals initiative.
From Executive Producer Stephen Curry, this award-winning film celebrates the true story of Kenny Sailors, the forgotten basketball legend who introduced the jump shot, became a two-time collegiate All American and NBA pioneer, revolutionized the sport for women, served as a U.S. Marine in WWII, and then quietly faded into history.
Watch the trailer. You can now preorder it now for only $7.99. You’ll get a 48-hour rental during the April 16-18 premiere, and 10% of proceeds will benefit our 10 Million Meals initiative, which is helping to feed millions of people across the U.S. during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Watch a movie, help feed someone in need.
April 14, 2020 | 10 a.m.
Tim Lucas, Lead Pastor of Liquid Church in New Jersey, had this to say about the truckload of food and supplies they received last week: “When the Convoy of Hope truck pulled into our church parking lot, it was like HOPE delivered to our doorstep!”
Just outside of New York City, many residents of New Jersey know they are close to what is being called the epicenter of the COVID-19 outbreak in the United States. Equipped with 26,000 pounds of supplies, Lucas’ church distributed relief to people in their community.
On Sunday, Liquid Church created what they call Emergency Easter Baskets, which are filled with items essential to those sheltering at home and often going without necessities.
“Forget chocolate bunnies … it’s toilet paper, sanitizers, and emergency food this year!” says Lucas.
With their Emergency Easter Baskets in tow, volunteers from Liquid Church launched out into their community, delivering baskets to widows, single parents, senior citizens, and other quarantined families.
Their first delivery was to a single mom who was widowed last year. Wearing their masks and moved to tears, the mother and son waved from their open door and shouted, “Happy Easter! Thank you so much!”
Convoy of Hope is proud to team up with partners like Liquid Church as we face this global pandemic together.
April 11, 2020 | 2:15 p.m.
Take a look at where Convoy of Hope has delivered help so far through our 10 Million Meals initiative.
April 10, 2020 | 9:15 a.m.
Convoy of Hope’s President, Hal Donaldson, has a special announcement regarding our 10 Million Meals initiative.
April 8, 2020 | 10:45 a.m.
MIAMI, FL — The staff at VOUS Church in Miami, Florida, know the circumstances they face are tough.
A highly contagious virus, strict social distancing guidelines, and limited access to resources would make any church second guess whether or not to hold community outreaches. But none of this has deterred VOUS from its mission.
They are acting quickly to help as many people as they can, all while complying with the health community’s recommendations. They knew they could count on Convoy of Hope to help them do it, and they’re already seeing change happen.
“We’re calling it the Gratitude Effect,” says Kat Rowse, who oversees Central Ministries at VOUS. “There are so many servant leaders that are part of our church. They’re jumping in more than ever because there is so much need and because there is so much of a desire for connection and to stay connected.”
Jamila Pereira, the I Love My Community Director at VOUS, saw the Gratitude Effect first-hand. She and a volunteer named William learned that two local foster care families had recently suffered tragedies. The father in one had recently passed away, and the mother in another was going through chemotherapy. Both families were struggling to find and prepare meals.
To help, William delivered prepackaged sandwiches to their homes. “William texted me a whole bunch of crying faces afterward,” Jamila says, “He was like, ‘I don’t cry. But this made me cry.’”
Kat, Jamila, and their teams have worked tirelessly to make sure the people in their church and in their community feel safe, cared for, and — most importantly — remembered. As soon as the Convoy of Hope truck was unloaded, they sent six pallets of sandwiches to a local rescue mission, delivered food to a nearby children’s home, sent supplies to a local special-needs home, and reached out to help foster care families. In all, they’ve helped prepare more than 14,000 meals for families in southern Florida.
Crises such as a widespread virus can physically and emotionally isolate people. But partnerships like the one Convoy of Hope has with VOUS Church remind us that even in the midst of hardships, there is hope.
“Tell everybody [at Convoy of Hope] we love you,” says Kat. “It’s like you guys are our heroes. And so anything that we can do to help you out or to partner with you, we’re down.”
Convoy of Hope is committed to providing 10 million meals during the COVID-19 pandemic. We’ve already responded to hundreds of partner requests in more than 40 states. Continue following our response here, or donate to our 10 Million Meals initiative here.
April 7, 2020 | 8:35 a.m.
Watch the video below to see how Convoy of Hope is creating connection and partnership through The Silver Dollar City Foundation and our 10 Million Meals initiative.
April 6, 2020 | 5 p.m.
Convoy of Hope continues resourcing partners across the U.S. as part of our 10 Million Meals initiative.
We are happy to report that we have already responded to hundreds of requests in more than 40 states. Multiple trucks leave Convoy of Hope’s World Distribution Center daily, delivering hope to vulnerable communities.
We had the privilege of working with Christ Fellowship Church and distributing relief supplies in Riviera Beach, Florida. Mayor Ronnie Felder joined the team passing out groceries and food to those who were homebound due to the virus.
“For several weeks now, you guys have been coming in and really being a help to our community,” Mayor Felder said. “You all are doing a wonderful job.”
Thanks to the generosity of partners and donors, we’ve distributed masks to hospitals, helped parents who are struggling to feed their children, and provided hope to so many more in need.
Like our response to any major disaster or crisis, we will continue to do as much as we can for as long as we can.
April 3, 2020 | 5 p.m.
As Convoy of Hope responds to COVID-19 in the states, we are also continuing our regular international programming — innovating as necessary to abide by specific country mandates. Read more about our international programming and COVID-19 response here.
April 2, 2020 | 12:50 p.m.
Thank you for continuing to help Convoy of Hope provide hope across the United States!
March 31, 2020 | 1 p.m.
Here’s an update from Convoy of Hope’s Senior Director of U.S. Disaster Services, Stacy Lamb.
March 30, 2020 | 6 p.m.
Over the weekend, Convoy of Hope continued resourcing partners across the U.S. as part of our 10 Million Meals initiative. The number of cases has increased in the U.S. to more than 140,000 — but hope is on the move.
Convoy is continuing to help people in desperate need in dozens of states and are thankful for our partners who are helping deliver hope in vulnerable communities.
One of our partners, Pastor Dan Ross from High Ridge, Missouri, articulated why Convoy of Hope works through local churches whenever possible: “The county called us, and through the relationship we have had with Convoy of Hope for the last 4 to 5 years, we have the relationships to get things out into the community. The fire chief, police chief, and school superintendent have all been working with us.”
When communities are in crisis, local churches often serve as a hub of hope. And when Convoy of Hope partners with local stakeholders, we gain access to community connections that enable us to quickly deliver hope where it’s most needed.
As part of our COVID-19 response, Convoy of Hope was able to provide a trailer full of water to High Ridge. Pastor Ross said the water was given to children who were still receiving meals from school, the fire department, and nursing mothers.
March 28, 2020 | 10:15 a.m.
SPRINGFIELD, MO.—Convoy of Hope is committed to providing help where it’s needed most. Here’s a look at our current COVID-19 response.
March 27, 2020 | 11:18 a.m.
Tonight at 7 p.m. CST, Australian Christian music duo for KING & COUNTRY is holding an online concert called “TOGETHER: A Night of Hope.” The event will feature numerous artists and celebrities, and the concert will benefit Convoy of Hope’s 10 Million Meals initiative.
For more information on how to watch, click here. You can also watch the event from Convoy of Hope’s Facebook page.
March 26, 2020 | 8:36 p.m.
HUMANSVILLE, MO — Pandemics affect everyone. News footage often shows how COVID-19 is affecting major cities, but those in rural areas are hard-hit, too. Schools still close, layoffs still happen, and people still feel isolated — perhaps even more so.
Carl Long is acutely aware of the difficulties rural communities face. Not only is he the pastor of Humansville Assembly of God, he’s also the mayor of the town.
“I got word that they were going to close our school and we have about 360 students there,” he said. “All of them qualify for free breakfast and free lunch. So I knew right away that a lot of those kids were going to be missing meals.”
Carl, his city, and his church have worked closely with Convoy of Hope’s Rural Initiatives for years. Together, we have found ways to help the people in Humansville, and the results have been transformative.
“We weren’t doing things badly, but there were some little adjustments that we needed to make and that training helped us see those things.”
Even with those changes, the community faces challenges.
“The one grocery store that was here closed in September of last year,” Carl says. “And so the only thing that we have as a source for food, or grocery items, is a Dollar General. Which is very limited. They are doing their absolute, very best to keep things stocked.”As the repercussions of the virus began affecting his town, Carl knew he could turn to Convoy of Hope for support.
“We ended up with a box truck full. So it was 12 pallets of supplies. I had a team here of about a dozen people ready to unload the truck and we began to sort it out.”
Word got around quickly about the distribution. Before long, cars were lining up down the street. Teams brought the boxed-up food and supplies out to each car and — with the appropriate social distancing — distributed food to dozens of families in a little over an hour.
“It was a lot of fun. I heard a lot laughing, a lot of cutting up and joking,” said Long.
The church also sent a truckload of cleaning supplies and snacks to a local nursing home for the residents. They also sent more supplies to a second nursing home in town, and plan to do another distribution next week.
“There are so many people dealing with anxiety and uncertainties,” Carl says. “And so for us to be a smiling face and to be able to give them a little bit of something … takes some of that sting off. It’s critical.”
March 25, 2020 | 2:05 p.m.
Convoy of Hope is excited to launch the 10 Million Meals strategy as a response to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Convoy is aiming to supply partners, churches, and community organizations with 10 million meals to be distributed across the United States to help feed people during this great time of need.
Our team is already at work. To date, we have received hundreds of resourcing requests from 35 different states. Convoy of Hope’s Disaster Services, Supply Chain, and other teams are working tirelessly to meet every need possible while trying to make sure every team member stays safe in the process.
We have already been meeting needs in big ways across the country, delivering dozens of loads and serving tens of thousands of people in need.
After receiving supplies, one partner organization in California said, “This is something like we’ve never seen before, and we are better for partnering with [Convoy of Hope].” They went on to say, “You are an absolute lifesaver. Thank you, thank you, thank you!”
Thank you for your kindness, compassion, and support during this unprecedented time. With your help and the help of our partners around the world, we can make a difference for millions of people through the 10 Million Meals strategy.
Be part of the response by donating today.
March 20, 2020 | 8:40 a.m.
In response to the COVID-19 outbreak, Convoy of Hope has ramped up our efforts to see that needs are met.
Through local partners in multiple states, Convoy of Hope is delivering food, water, hygiene kits, cleaning supplies, and other relief materials. So far, resources are either en route or have already been delivered to 22 locations around the country.
As requests for assistance increase, Convoy of Hope offers sincere thanks to both corporate partners who donate the supplies people need and those who have given financially to see that they are delivered.
Click here for more information about things you can do to safeguard yourself and others against COVID-19.
March 17, 2020 | 5:45 p.m.
Convoy of Hope is responding to requests made for assistance in meeting needs related to the COVID-19 pandemic in 19 states. This work is being done through local partners helping offset school lunch needs caused by prolonged cancellations within their school districts.
March 16, 2020 | 2:15 p.m.
Convoy of Hope is responding to the COVID-19 pandemic to help those in desperate need. We have committed to providing at least 50 tractor-trailer loads of emergency food and water — approximately 2 million pounds of relief supplies — to people most affected by the coronavirus.
“Convoy of Hope began responding last month to requests for help to meet the coronavirus outbreak,” said Convoy of Hope Senior Vice President Kregg Hood. “With the latest news, we are now rapidly expanding our efforts to resource people in need.”
Thank you for your support as Convoy of Hope continues serving people through our ongoing programming around the world in addition to our COVID-19 response.
March 16, 2020 | 7:29 a.m.
As cases of COVID-19 increase within the United States, here are some answers to questions you may have about the virus.
- Can the coronavirus be transferred as a foodborne illness?
- How can I naturally strengthen my immune system?
*This resource is provided by Convoy of Hope as a courtesy only. Convoy of Hope recommends that you consult authoritative sources for up-to-date information on COVID-19. We hope these links and ideas are helpful, but we do not intend for this to be a substitute for authoritative data and information put out by the Centers for Disease Control, World Health Organization, and other agencies.
March 11, 2020 | 4:42 p.m.
According to the Associated Press, The World Health Organization (WHO) has officially declared that the global COVID-19 crisis is a pandemic, which they define as a new virus causing sustained outbreaks in multiple regions of the world.
This elevated status is causing governments and organizations to reevaluate what they can do to help control the spread of the virus. Below are resources we’ve gathered regarding COVID-19 that may be helpful to you. We hope they are useful as you evaluate how to keep yourself and your loved ones safe.
- CDC Travel Warning Levels
- World Health Organization COVID-19
- Harvard Medical School Coronavirus Resource Center
- Ease Your Fears: Coronavirus & Travel
- WHO Coaching Videos & Graphics
*This resource is provided by Convoy of Hope as a courtesy only. Convoy of Hope recommends that you consult authoritative sources for up-to-date information on COVID-19. We hope these links and ideas are helpful, but we do not intend for this to be a substitute for authoritative data and information put out by the Centers for Disease Control, World Health Organization, and other agencies.
March 10, 2020 | 7:37 a.m.
COVID-19, the highly contagious strain of the coronavirus that has spread worldwide, has dominated the news cycle for weeks now. To help protect our readers against misinformation regarding the virus, we’ve compiled a list of credible links to help answer questions you may be asking.
- What are practical ways to prevent the spread of coronavirus at home, in the office, or in public?
- How many cases of COVID-19 are there in the United States?
- What countries are the higher risk to travel to?
- What should I do if I have travel scheduled?
- Should I be wearing a respirator when I leave my house?
- Who is considered high risk to get coronavirus?
- What if someone I know lives in a senior living center?
*This resource is provided by Convoy of Hope as a courtesy only. Convoy of Hope recommends that you consult authoritative sources for up-to-date information on COVID-19. We hope these links and ideas are helpful, but we do not intend for this to be a substitute for authoritative data and information put out by the Centers for Disease Control, World Health Organization, and other agencies.
February 27, 2020 | 1:23 p.m.
While Convoy of Hope is not a medical response organization, we do occasionally assist in situations where the health and well-being of others is in jeopardy.
This particular strain of the virus, COVID-19, began in China’s Hubei province. According to the BBC, it quickly spread throughout the country. Several other nations have reported their own outbreaks, including South Korea, Japan, Iran, and Italy.
While the number of cases was low at the time this article was written, the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is forecasting that the virus will eventually make its way to the United States. Convoy of Hope will continue to closely monitor the spread of COVID-19 and assist as much as possible.