Our Response to COVID-19

When the COVID-19 crisis began in March 2020, we at St. Vincent dePaul Vancouver responded immediately, changing our operations so that we could continue to serve our clients while maintaining a safe environment for everyone who came to our Stapleton Road facility.

With help from the Clark County Food Bank, USDA food programs, food drives and our supporting Catholic parishes, we continued to provide the blessing of good food for many families, as well as hundreds of bag lunches to our homeless community. We served our clients with pre-packaged food boxes and limited choices of perishable items. Using this method of delivering food, during the month of April 2020 we served 1,955 households with 79,886 pounds of food, an average of 100 food boxes every day. 

We also continued to provide rent support, and were able to assist many more local families thanks to a $50,000 grant from the Community Foundation for Southwest Washington for this specific need. We also received a $25,000 grant through the Foundation's Hansen Family Fund for "greatest need", which gave us flexibility to assist our clients with other necessities such as utility payments, laundry service, emergency shelter, etc.

While delivering pre-packaged food outdoors during the first year of the pandemic, we took advantage of that time to re-configure our facility, purchasing new shelving and grocery shopping carts. In April of 2021, we re-opened our doors to serve our neighbors in a 100% self-select shopping style, and in September of that year, we re-opened our clothing area. We continue to serve 90 - 100 families daily.

Elizabeth Bell, who works as an individual provider in Vancouver, from left, waits to pick up food for a client as Nicholas Chandler, also of Vancouver, picks up food off a conveyer belt with the help of volunteer Maggie Bomber of St. Vincent de Paul Vancouver on Thursday morning. St. Vincent de Paul Vancouver has been one of the busiest food pantries during the pandemic.

Photo courtesy of Amanda Cowan/The Columbian
Delivering pre-packaged food boxes, summer 2020

Shopping style, allowing clients to select their foods, began in April 2021

Our friendly volunteers help in the clothing area