PINE BLUFF, Ark. – Cars lined up for hours outside a Pine Bluff middle school waiting to get their hands on groceries to fill the fridge. Between COVID-19 job cuts and Sunday’s storms in Jefferson county that cut the power, a lot of people have lost their food supply with little money to replace it. A Pine Bluff food pantry helped get meals to those who need it most.
You can always count on a crowd for the First Ward Living Grace Pantry House’s food drive.
“Food insecurity is a big big major problem,” Board member Phyllis Wilkins said.
With COVID-19 shutting down businesses left and right, more people are pulling into the parking lot.
“My hours got reduced, still waiting on my stimulus check waiting on my unemployment and I have to come to the food pantry to survive,” pantry customer Brenda Williams said.
When storms rolled through Sunday, it just magnified that need.
“Our power was out from Sunday until yesterday which was Friday. We had to throw away everything in our freezer and refrigerator,” Wilkins said.
While she is able to replace what she lost, many aren’t able to do the same. That’s why this food drive, they added food trucks to an already stocked pantry.
“It’s a blessing to be able to give back. It’s a blessing,” Food Truck owner Niche Walters said.
Cars stacked bumper to bumper waiting to get their hands on a hot meal and a box full of groceries. Overall volunteers gave out about 400 boxes. They will have another drive at the end of May.