AUSTIN, Texas - About 1,400 vehicles, representing an estimated 5,000 people, pulled into the parking lot at Tony Burger Stadium in South Austin on Monday morning.
Three lanes of food distribution were set up for people like Marissa Rodriguez. “It means a lot to us, it helps out a lot … without them, we'd probably not have much,” said Rodriguez.
The Central Texas Food Bank distribution includes 7-day meal packs for families with Austin ISD. That's because the on-campus curbside service is suspended during the holiday break.
"There is a lot of need in this city for various reasons, but there is also a lot to be thankful for. One, we live in a city that is as philanthropic and giving as Austin, there has been a time when we as a food bank haven't gone forward, when we requested assistance, that the community hasn't come forward,” said Derrick Chubbs with the Central Texas Food Bank.
The community has come forward not only with money but with volunteers, who continue to step up and work the distribution lines. Among the small army of regular volunteers on Monday was Carol Hopkins. "I count them up, how long have we've been here, but. It keeps on coming, it’s still with us."
Texas Senator John Cornyn (R) Texas saw that first hand as he handed out food packages. "Well, obviously these are human beings, these are not numbers,” said Senator Cornyn.
The senator said he is hopeful new financial aid will be distributed from the government and distribution events for vaccines will start next month.
"The most important thing we need to remember is not to go through pandemic fatigue, we know we all have an individual responsibility to ourselves, to our families, to not spread this virus, and the way we do that is wash our hands, maintain social distancing, masking and stay at home when you're sick,” said Cornyn.
Thinking small is the holiday plan for Daniel Robles and his wife Olga. They arrived shortly after an additional food supply truck pulled into the site. The extras boxes of food will help save their Thanksgiving. "Without this, no. It’s a blessing for us. It’s a blessing,” said the couple.
The next food distribution by the Central Texas Food Bank is scheduled for Thursday, Dec 3 and it will take place in Waco.