They planned to pass out bags of groceries to community members for an hour and a half on Wednesday. The demand was so high, however, it took just half that time to run out of supplies.
On Wednesday, CoBiz Richmond and Brothers of International Faith Inc. partnered on their first grocery giveaway, providing bags filled with food to 89 families at the CoBiz headquarters at 1503 Macdonald Ave. in Richmond.
Christina Kenney, community manager at CoBiz, a state-of-the-art coworking space and business incubator that launched in November, said the grocery giveaways will continue to occur on the first and fifth Wednesday of the month to provide relief for residents impacted by the COVID-19 crisis.
Grocery bags donated by Chevron Richmond carried items including produce, dairy, grains, protein and pastries, mostly from Whole Foods Market, Kenney said.
Kenney expressed gratitude to the 12 volunteers who helped out at Wednesday’s giveaway.
“Many have committed to sharing their time with us again,” she said.
The CoBiz team said it felt honored to serve the community, and poised to do more.
“It was painfully clear that there is more to be done,” Kenney said. “We are going to work diligently to collaborate with other partners, leaders, and members of the community. We are one of many that answered the call and we want to thank and acknowledge those who are also serving one another. We can only come out of this stronger together.”
In addition to its new grocery giveaway event, CoBiz has become a virtual resource center for community businesses, nonprofits and entrepreneurs trying to navigate the pandemic’s impacts.
CoBiz is a project of the Chevron Richmond Refinery’s eQuip Richmond initiative, a multi-year $10 million investment funding economic strategies to bolster communities in Richmond and North Richmond by encouraging small business development, preparing residents for the workforce and creating pathways to sustainable, living wages and careers in growth industries.