The non-profit touched down to provide hot meals this week.
Last week and this week, the Midwest experienced severe flooding as the result of a bomb cyclone, and CNN reports that Nebraska, Iowa, and Wisconsin have all declared states of emergency—Nebraska was particularly hard hit, with the flooding “so bad it’s breaking records across the state.” On Wednesday, Nebraska's governor, Pete Ricketts, said there was nearly $1.4 billion in losses; Iowa Governor Kim Reynolds estimated $1.6 billion in damages last Friday. Missouri, Kansas, South Dakota, Minnesota, and Illinois also experienced flooding, according to USA Today. To help out, World Central Kitchen—a non-profit founded by José Andrés that travels around the world to provide meals for victims of natural disasters—touched down this week and activated a relief kitchen.
Andrés tweeted on Tuesday that World Central Kitchen’s Relief Team was on the ground in Nebraska and Iowa to “support evacuee shelters and families impacted by the flooding.” And on Thursday, we got an update from the WCK account; a team member named Tim posted a video telling people about the team’s efforts in Fremont, Nebraska, to provide hot, nutritious meals to people displaced by the flooding. He showed volunteers making a salad—cucumber, tomato, and red bell pepper—as well as a “chicken chili verde” with rice, cotija cheese, and cilantro. In total, they prepared over 1,000 meals, which were delivered to a flooded mobile home park—Tim noted that many of the families have been using hotels as shelters. He also said they expect to pick up another community to help on Friday.
In addition to Nebraska, World Central Kitchen was also on the front lines in California to feed people affected by the wildfires; provided over 300,000 meals in the Florida panhandle to first responders and people displaced by Hurricane Michael, and, as of December 21, was serving 40,000 meals daily to migrants at the El Barretal shelter in Tijuana—and that was in 2018 alone. You can check out more of World Central Kitchen’s efforts here, and follow along with the World Central Kitchen account on Twitter.