United Center Housing 775K Pounds of Food for Greater Chicago Food Depository

Timothy Rapp@@TRappaRTFeatured ColumnistApril 10, 2020

CHICAGO, IL - FEBRUARY 16: LeBron James #2 of Team LeBron dribbles the ball up the court during the 69th NBA All-Star Game as part of 2020 NBA All-Star Weekend on February 16, 2020 at United Center in Chicago, Illinois. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and/or using this Photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. Mandatory Copyright Notice: Copyright 2020 NBAE (Photo by Bill Baptist/NBAE via Getty Images)
Bill Baptist/Getty Images

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."