UPDATE (As of 6/4/21)
The COVID 19 pandemic has had a negative impact on all of our lives. Illness and death have been very real for some. The entire situation has been fluid and evolving from the beginning. The Brazos Valley Food Bank’s (BVFB) continued response and safety measures related to COVID-19 are a priority, always based upon the best information available at the time.
Following the current CDC guidelines, BVFB will implement the standards below for COVID-19, effective June 7, 2021.
- BVFB strongly encourages individuals to receive the COVID-19 vaccine.
- Be mindful that vaccinations are a personal decision. No one should pry or question others’ choices.
- For those who are fully vaccinated, masks are no longer required by BVFB.
- When visiting BVFB or seeking BVFB services, know that the BVFB staff person interacting with you will gladly join you in wearing a mask if you ask us to.
- For those who are not fully vaccinated, BVFB still highly recommends face coverings in order to reduce the spread of COVID-19.
- Aside from face coverings, BVFB encourages everyone to follow other COVID-19 protocols consistent with public health guidance:
- Utilize good personal hygiene practices (e.g., washing your hands, covering your sneeze/cough, etc.)
- Social distancing
- Use of hand sanitizers
If you are experiencing illness (i.e., fever, chills, coughing, muscle or body aches, new loss of taste or smell, sore throat, nausea or vomiting, runny nose or congestion), please do not visit the food bank until you are feeling well.
BVFB’s top priority is the safety and health of everyone. If conditions change, these policies can and will be updated to meet emerging best practices.
UPDATE (As of 3/9/21)
Brazos Valley Food Bank (BVFB)'s Response to Governor Abbott;s Executive Order (GA-34)
Since the COVID pandemic began, BVFB has followed the guidelines established by the Center for Disease Control (CDC), requiring all employees, interns, temporary employees, donors, vendors, volunteers and other visitors to BVFB locations and work sites to adhere to daily COVID screening questions, temperature monitoring, mask wearing, social distancing and handwashing.
These practices have resulted in 0% known COVID virus transmissions at BVFB's facility.
The health and safety of Brazos Valley Food Bank (BVFB)'s program participants, other visitors, staff and volunteers remains a top priority. Therefore, BVFB will continue all of these practices until further notice. While you may not agree with this decision, we ask that you respect it when interacting in perons with BVFB.
BVFB plans to reopen its Lobby to the public beginning March 10th, since these protective measures will remain in place. Hours will be 8:30 am to 4:30 pm. Food Donations should be dropped off at The Edge Dock (covered ramp at the back of the Volunteer Parking lot, until further notice). Monetary donations, meetings with staff, etc. should still be scheduled in advance.
As frontline employees serving the critical needs of our community, we need our health in order to fulfill our mission. But, as a community-based organization, we also need you and your support. It is our hope that we will still have it.
UPDATE (As of 3/3/21)
The health and safety of Brazos Valley Food Bank (BVFB)'s program participants, other visitors, staff and volunteers remains a top priority.
Since the COVID pandemic began, BVFB has followed the guidelines established by the Center for Disease Control (CDC). As frontline employees serving the critical needs of our community, employees, interns, temporary employees, donors, vendors, volunteers and other visitors to BVFB locations and sites are still required to adhere to our COVID protocol - screening questions, temperature monitoring, wearing masks, social distancing and handwashing.
BVFB management and Board of Directos are reviewing this matter carefully, from all angles.
The current rules and protocols at BVFB, including a closed front Lobby, will remain in place until at least March 10, before which BVFB will issue further guidance.
UPDATE (As of 7/20/20)
The Brazos Valley Food Bank is happy to report that no self-isolating staff that had direct contact with our 1 COVID positive employee tested positive for COVID! And, the employee that tested positive is doing much better. The Distribution Warehouse and the Volunteer Center are back open today (7/20/20) and for the foreseeable future.
Important COVID-19 Announcement (As of 7/10/20)
As a trusted helping organization in the Brazos Valley and one that values transparency, we feel this information is important to share with all of our supporters:
BVFB has an employee who tested positive for COVID late yesterday afternoon (7/9/20). That employee left the facility immediately and is now quarantining. Because this employee had close contact with all warehouse and volunteer center staff, these staff are now self-isolating and will be tested.
As of right now, the Warehouse and Volunteer Center are closed from now through next week (at least).
Plan of action:
- The Warehouse and Volunteer Center will be completely sanitized by a professional service.
- We are exploring alternate options in order to maintain some distribution processes next week. Stay tuned.
BVFB has been operating throughout COVID. We never stopped our services - yet, almost all services had to be modified. Safety for those in need, for volunteers and staff was and is a high priority. BVFB implemented social distancing in the Volunteer Center and Warehouse early on, as well as gloves. We also mandated masks well before it was being done in this area and long before there were mandates. We have hand sanitizer everywhere and utilize a professional cleaning service that has done weekly deep cleaning/sanitizing for us for months now.
Nonetheless, COVID has now hit BVFB. We are handling the situation responsibly and professionally, consulting the Brazos County Health District and following CDC guidelines. Our goal is to get everyone back here at soon as possible, acting as safely as possible, and to get food to our partner agencies and ultimately to those who need it ongoingly.
If you have volunteered with us this week, separate notification has already been sent to you. If you are scheduled to volunteer next week, someone will be in contact with you soon. If you are a partner agency that may have been exposed, you will hear from us (if you do not hear from us, there is nothing to worry about at this time). Same with Retail Pick-Up Partners.
We always appreciate you. But, at this difficult time, we would really value your continued support.
- The Brazos Valley Food Bank