Food For Families Drive Can Help With End-of-School Woes

At the Wichita Falls Area Food Bank, staff and volunteers are getting ready for the start of the massive, hyper-local food drive.  Assistant Director Michelle Schuster says she has a lot of faith in the donating public.

"They always come through and I know they will again this year," she said.

During the next three weeks, folks all over Texoma will have 13 donations spots to choose from in each of 11 cities.  And don't worry -- the food you give will help the people right in your community.

"With our food drives, we try to make sure that in our smaller communities, whatever's collected there stays there," Schuster said.

Each day during the drive each drop-off location will call in to report its poundage to the food bank in Wichita Falls, simply to keep track of the running total.

"Sometimes there's competition.  Sometimes it's also competitions for the stores themselves, so it's never that we don't encourage the competition because of course, that brings in so much for us," Schuster said.

While there is always someone who needs food at any time of year, this food drive in May will be especially helpful to families with kids.  Once summer vacation starts, parents may find they can't stretch their dollars on food as much anymore.

"With the school being out and these families not being able to get the free or reduced lunches and also the free breakfast, that there is more people that come into our pantry for that extra help," Schuster said.

The food bank hopes Texoma will be able to collect at least 60,000 pounds of food.  While 30 tons may sound overwhelming at first, Schuster says it's not as crazy when you take it one step at a time.

"Even if everyone that goes to the grocery store picks up one or two items for the food bank an puts those in those bins, they'll be surprised how fast those pounds add up," she said.

You can find the list of drop-off locations here.