East Texas Food Bank hosts holiday food distribution event in Tyler

The East Texas Food Bank is lending a helping hand to people struggling to fill their table for the holidays.
Published: Nov. 21, 2022 at 10:33 AM CST
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TYLER, Texas (KLTV) - Hundreds of cars lined up on the Green Acres Baptist Church campus and down Troup Highway for the East Texas Food Bank’s holiday food box distribution in Tyler.

The East Texas Food Bank is making sure families have food on their table ahead of Thanksgiving. Communications and Marketing Director Rebecca Berkley said they continue to see long lines at their mobile pantry distributions.

“The need is huge, even compared to the pandemic,” Berkley said. “The prices in the grocery stores that we’re all seeing is impacting a lot of people, and we are seeing people that have never been in line before. You are seeing middle-class families who just need a little extra help.”

Volunteers with Green Acres Baptist Church helped guide cars through their campus to get them to volunteers who were packing boxes into cars. Raul Rodriguez was seen packing produce into a basket on his bicycle. He said he was getting food for his clients.

“I take care of three clients, and I go to the store for them. I heard that they’re giving away free boxes, and I said, well, I get me one too,” Rodriquez said. “Prices of groceries are too high. Some people can’t afford it.”

Berkley said they anticipated being able to help more than 12,000 people. Inside the boxes were ham, green beans, macaroni and cheese and other holiday staples. They also had fresh produce in another box.

James Thomas said he was driving by and saw the lines. He pulled over to see what was happening and said the gesture is going to help them a lot.

“It will help us a lot because we don’t have a whole lot,” Thomas said. “So, it will help out a lot, and then probably will help out our family a little bit too. We picked up some for them, too.”

If you were not able to make it to the distribution, you can still get food. Visit the ETFB website, and from there, click on the “Find Food” tab in the upper right corner to find pantries near you.