New York food banks have become inundated with newcomers deprived of income since the near-total halt of business in the United States' economic capital.
Sacks of oranges, sweet potatoes and onions are spread over three tables at an open-air market in Washington Heights, a neighborhood in the north of Manhattan. Sterilized milk and cans of tuna and salmon cover three others.
Hundreds of people came over the weekend to restock at the distribution center, one of many run by City Harvest, a major New York-based charity.
There are no long lines reminiscent of the soup kitchens of the 1930s. Instead, people trickle in, often wearing masks for protection and keeping their distance from each other under the direction of market volunteers.
Among the customers is Lina Alba, 40, a single mother with five children aged between 11 and 23. She worked as a maid in a Manhattan hotel until it closed two weeks ago.
Her two oldest children also lost their jobs.
"It is my first time," she said. "We need the help now. This is crazy. So we don't know what's gonna happen in a few weeks."
She's trying to stay positive, though. "At least I'm spending time with my kids... I am the teacher, I am the mom -- I am everything."
"We are alive, we are healthy, we just need to pray."
It took the single mother a week to register for unemployment -- the service flooded, pointing to much worse unemployment numbers than those announced by the federal government on Thursday.
But on Friday, "I did it, finally," Alba said, relieved.
The benefits should start arriving in three weeks. Alba also hopes to receive soon at least $1,200 from the federal government, thanks to a historic aid package passed last week by Congress.
"It's not gonna be enough," but "you're gonna appreciate anything right now," she said, noting that "a lot of people" need help.
"It is the whole entire city."
- Millions need help -
Jose Neri, 51, is one of many Hispanic employees who worked in now-closed New York restaurants. He also came to a food bank for the first time.
There are five people in his family. "We're using our savings to survive," he said in Spanish, wearing a mask and gloves in an effort to prevent himself from catching the virus.
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