IEHP and Victor Valley College Continue Food Distribution in the High Desert

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Inland Empire Health Plan (IEHP) has partnered with Victor Valley College (VVC) to address food insecurity in the high desert. Community residents can receive a free food box at VVC’s Lower Campus every Monday from 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.

While residents are encouraged to register online at tinyurl.com/vvcfoodboxreg, non-registered walk-ups are welcome at 12:30 p.m., while supplies last. Recipients must be 18 years or older, and boxes are limited to one per household.

Prior to partnering with VVC, the health plan hosted weekly food box drive-thru distribution events at their Victorville Community Resource Center (CRC), totaling more than $5M in food from June 2020 to July 2021.

“Food insecurity is one of the greatest needs in our region. We knew the distribution efforts had to continue,” said Delia Orosco, IEHP Victorville CRC Manager. “We are so grateful to VVC, a key community partner, for continuing to serve the community so our resource centers can prepare to reopen and serve again in the future.”

To support high desert residents, food is ordered weekly through Community Action Partnership of San Bernardino, picked up each Monday morning by High Desert Second Chance, and delivered to VVC. IEHP Team Members, VVC students and faculty, and volunteers from God’s Hand Extended operate the event and work to distribute food directly to residents.

“It is truly our pleasure to partner with such amazing organizations like IEHP and God’s Hand Extended. This is a collaborative effort and great example of how education, healthcare, and community organizations can come together with a common goal and purpose to serve,” said Amber Allen, VVC Special Grant Programs Director. “By bringing our community to the college to provide food, we are opening the doors to people who may not be aware of available opportunities at VVC. This effort helps us to meet people where they are, so they have the ability to focus on their goals, beyond just meeting their basic needs.”

In addition to food distribution efforts, IEHP and VVC will launch on-campus health and wellness programs to support VVC students. Programs will include personalized wellness support for students, fitness classes and more.

“These resources are brought to the community, by the community,” said Jarrod McNaughton, IEHP Chief Executive Officer. “These partnerships place life-changing resources within reach for so many of our most vulnerable residents. Times may be tough, and resources may be sparse, but partnerships and collaborations allow for hope and progress to be continuously made.”

VVC hopes to continue the distribution effort for as long as it is needed. To learn more about the food box drive-thru, visit vvc.edu/events/free-weekly-food-box-drive-thru.

Inland Empire Health Plan (IEHP) | Contributed

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