COVID-19 update 1

The Arlington Food Assistance Center (AFAC) is closely monitoring the national and local developments regarding the spread of COVID-19 (the coronavirus).

AFAC is actively planning how we will continue to operate in the short and long term. Our planning begins with the recognition of our responsibility to continue our services to all in need in our community. Very simply, we are committed to our mission in good times and bad. We are not going to stop our services.

Our staff has been charged with developing a comprehensive plan which follows the recommendations of the Centers for Disease Control and state and local agencies. We have already instituted a heightened cleaning routine to minimize any potential transmission while at AFAC and lessen the fears that are obviously building among our families, our volunteers, and our staff. As this situation develops, we will take additional steps, as recommended by public health agencies to assure the health and safety of our community and all who depend on AFAC for assistance.

With this in mind, we have canceled our annual spring event, Shining a Light on Hunger, which was scheduled for March 26 at Army Navy Country Club. We have contacted our sponsors and attendees and we thank them for their understanding and their continued support. We have also suspended our Weekly Garden Talks series at Arlington Central Library for the meantime.


We have already seen a sharp decrease in food donations from our local grocery stores. AFAC has begun to purchase more food to offset the drop of food available on our shelves. Please think about making a donation to AFAC to help us keep our warehouse full for our families in need. We are still accepting food donations. If you want to host a food drive in your community, please visit our food drive registration page for more details.

If this continues long-term, many of those working in the service industries may be affected which may result in a significant increase in the demand for our services. AFAC is committed to serving all in need and will remain ready and determined to serve the least fortunate and most vulnerable in our community.


We are evaluating our current volunteer needs daily. If you are registered volunteer, please check the volunteer calendar where we will add spots as needed. If you don’t have an active account, you can fill out our volunteer profile form to access the calendar, once your application has been processed by a staff member. For now, we are keeping our volunteer groups small and volunteers need to be 14 and older.

It is our sincere hope this virus will be contained but we are taking appropriate and prudent measures to be prepared and ready as this situation develops. We will keep the many families who rely on AFAC, our volunteers, staff, and all who help AFAC fully informed as we face this time of uncertainty.

If you have any questions or concerns, please don’t hesitate to contact us via email at

Thank you.Charles Meng
Executive Director & CEO