Construction will start within the next month on a new facility for the Capital Area Food Bank.
The old site on South Congress simply isn't big enough to keep up with the growing demand according to CEO Hank Perret. For four years now the food bank and board have worked on the expansion plans. The facility will nearly double in size to 135,000 square feet and will be located at 6500 Metropolis not far from Austin Bergstrom International Airport.
Thirty-one million pounds of food was distributed across Central Texas by CAFB last year and yet the non-profit still fell short of meeting the need by 30 percent.
"The need continues to grow. The population growth of food insecure people in Central Texas is greater than the general population growth and that's been documented by the city demographer," said Perret.
The facility costs $21 million and will include additional freezer space, more loading docks and a kitchen.
One in four children and one in six people are hungry or are at risk of being hungry.
The CAFB serves 300 partner agencies in a 21 county area.
"The face of hunger is misunderstood. People think it's the guy on the street looking for a couple bucks but it is working people. People who are working one or more jobs making minimum wage or senior citizens on fixed income," said Perret.
The statistics of hunger are numbers the non-profit, volunteers and members of the community are trying to change one meal at a time.