INDIANAPOLIS — Gleaners Food Bank is reinstating drive-thru distribution, and is saying it is the result of "substantial, sustained increased need."
Gleaners said the number of people being served is up 50% from the start of the year. In fact, the levels are nearly what they were at the height of the pandemic.
“We don’t make this decision lightly,” said Gleaners president and CEO Fred Glass. “With winter approaching and wait times for our shoppers due to increased demand exceeding 2 1/2 hours, this was the right decision to best support the growing number of our neighbors in need.”
Prior to the pandemic, Gleaners' maximum in-person daily household shoppers it could serve was 400. In recent weeks, it has been handling 700 households. That demand led to long wait times and parking issues.
“Our goal at all times is to offer a safe, respectful, and dignified experience for those we serve. The long wait and sometimes chaotic parking situation did not offer that experience,” Glass said.
Glass said the Gleaners team is now working on ways to provide support services during the drive-thru setting with things like SNAP applications.
Gleaner Community Cupboard is located at the Gleaners warehouse at 3737 Waldemere Ave. It is open Tuesdays and Wednesdays from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., Thursdays from 2 to 7 p.m., and Saturdays 9 a.m. to noon.