The United Center, home of the Chicago Bulls and Chicago Blackhawks, is housing 774,840 pounds of food for the Greater Chicago Food Depository amid the COVID-19 pandemic, according to Ben Pope of the Chicago Sun-Times.
With the United Center filling up with "rice, beans, pasta, tuna, tomato sauce, peanut butter, canned vegetables and other non-perishable items," it has created more space in the GCFD's warehouse, allowing workers and volunteers more room to operate in accordance with social distancing guidelines.
"They've been piling up in our warehouse, and they are going into our network, but we're trying to store some, too," GFCD senior manager Greg Trotter told Pope regarding the food. "We have a feeling that things are going to become significantly worse, in terms of food insecurity, in the weeks to come.
With the NBA and NHL seasons on hiatus, the United Center is a natural spot to store food. And with the uncertainty of when social distancing guidelines will end, efforts to feed people in need will only grow more important.
"There's still going to be a long tail on this crisis," Trotter said. "People who have been laid off or their income has taken a hit, they're going to have to get their lives back. This is not something that's going to be resolved anytime soon. Our neighbors are going to need our help for a long time. We're bracing for that reality."