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Coronavirus response: Feeding Tampa Bay partners with celebrity chef for bi-weekly Facebook series

Hillsborough County

TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) – Feeding Tampa Bay is working around the clock to provide donations for food-insecure families, especially during the coronavirus pandemic. 

“When our community is in crisis like it is today, Feeding Tampa Bay is (a) crisis responder,” said Feeding Tampa Bay President and CEO Thomas Mantz. “We are trying to supply items that they can use today or use over the course of the next few days. We want to be sure everyone has access to a healthy nutritious meal.” 

The food bank is taking that mission one step further with the help of Celebrity Chef Jeff Philbin

“We are taking the ingredients a Feeding Tampa Bay recipient would receive and cooking a humble meal with that,” said Philbin. 

Philbin will host a bi-weekly Facebook series called “LIVE: Dining-In with Feeding Tampa Bay” alongside another local chef. Together they will show their audience how to prepare dishes made from the ingredients found in Feeding Tampa Bay’s food boxes. 

“We are also getting to highlight that restaurant. We are getting to celebrate the mission of Feeding Tampa Bay and we are bringing joy to people that can be a part of the whole process because now more than ever, we need the community to come together,” said Philbin. 

On Wednesday, Chef Philbin and Chef Jason Bamford from Elevage made chicken pasta and garlic bread for viewers: 

Philbin tells WFLA. com the latest project is not only feeding his soul but the “Master Chef” contestant hopes it will nourish the community during the COVID-19 crisis.   

“It’s so powerful, the meaning of what food can do. It’s a glue, a conduit to experiences and to joy. Right now, more than ever, we need to celebrate that and (that’s) why it’s so important that we bring healthy and delicious meals that a community in need right now can use and use to bring a little bit of smile,” said Philbin.  

“LIVE: Dining-In with Feeding Tampa Bay” will air every other Wednesday at 6 p.m. 

To learn more about Feeding Tampa Bay or to learn how you can become a volunteer, visit their website.  


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