AUSTIN, Texas - Lorraine Flores was one of the early birds to make it to the latest Central Texas Food Bank distribution. “We lined up around 10:30 a.m. but it's going to be worth the wait,” she said.
The pandemic hit her family hard. Her son lost a large portion of income once South by Southwest was canceled. “I’ve been trying to make sure daddy's ok, my sister in Austin, making sure mama's ok,” said Flores.
She was one of more than 1,000 cars lined up to pick up a box of food at Del Valle High School.
“I’m grateful they are doing something like this. The pandemic, nobody really expected it, nobody was really prepared for it,” said Mariana Lopez.
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Lopez came with her grandmother. “The pandemic has affected me and my family because my dad has not been able to go to work, neither has my grandma. I can't even go to work,” said Lopez.
Recipients received non-perishables like pasta, beans, canned chicken, along with some frozen produce. They served more than 1,600 households Thursday.
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"This past Saturday we were at Reagan High School and we saw the largest we've ever seen. That was over 2,300 households, which equated to about 10,000 individuals. In Travis County alone we are seeing triple-digit kinds of increases in new clients coming for assistance. So this is like nothing we've ever seen before,” said Derrick Chubbs, president and CEO of Central Texas Food Bank.
The food bank will be holding two special distributions per week during the month of May. They are providing peace of mind, for the thousands of Central Texans out of work. “Once everything starts opening back up slowly, we can go back to work and stuff. But until then we are going to have to stick with each other and go to events like this,” said Lopez.
“I lost my home in the Bastrop fire. I know what it was like ten years back. Here we go again but that's ok. I survived it then I can survive it now,” said Flores.
Due to high usage, the food bank is also in need of more resources. Chubbs said they have been purchasing food at retail prices. Monetary donations are also needed. For information on donating, volunteering, or food distribution locations, click here.
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