Heart of the High Plains: High Plains Food Bank

Heart of the High Plains

AMARILLO, Texas (KAMR/KCIT) — Throughout this pandemic, the High Plains Food Bank has continually adjusted in order to feed those that need it most.

“Our job is to help folks and help to be that lifeline, that supplement to going hungry,” said Zack Wilson, High Plains Food Bank Executive Director.

It’s even more now than ever these days with the ongoing pandemic.

Last year around this time when the pandemic first hit, the Food Bank was hit with a high number of people requesting and needing food assistance.

“Beginning March into April, within a few weeks time period, we saw a 20-fold increase of folks that were calling or seeking help, especially when the economy shut down and folks went on a furlough or lost jobs. It was almost an instantaneous, new group of folks that never asked for help or never needed help before,” said Wilson.

Which put a strain on their inventory.

“When we had donations strolling in last year, it wasn’t until mid-summer last year that we were able to do something with it, that we were actually able to get food because everyone was looking for the same thing. But more importantly when those factors came together, we were able to help a lot of folks last year,” said Wilson.

Wilson said there was a couple of months where they distributed almost a million pounds of food in just 30 days.

The pandemic forced them to get creative with how they made it happen.

“You saw a lot of these spring up last year, pop-up food pantries and food being made available through channels on an emergency basis. It was just crucial that we were able to keep going,” said Wilson.

Following through on their mission of alleviating that hunger here on the higher plains with some high plains generosity to help out.

“Never underestimate the value of generosity and the value of the heart of folks that live here in the Texas panhandle to reach out and to help other folks in need. Those are the two biggest things, if you have those then I think we’re on a right path,” said Wilson.

Wilson said they are always looking for volunteers to come in and help sort and package food in their warehouse.

If you are interested in volunteering, click here.


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