In order to meet the increased food demand that many communities are facing amid the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, the Tarrant Area Food Bank is expanding on their weekly Mega Mobile Markets.
The markets are mass food distribution events where North Texas families can drive up -- no questions asked -- and volunteers load 100 pounds of high-quality produce, meat, dairy and groceries into their trunk.
Crews have been working Friday distributions every week for months at Fort Worth's Herman Clark Stadium. The effort started off helping over 1,000 families per week and that need has increased to close to 3,000 families.
This week, the markets are scheduled for Tuesday through Saturday in various locations across the Tarrant area.
Tuesday - Southcliff Church in Fort Worth Wednesday Arlington Charities Thursday - Harvesting in Mansfield Friday - Herman Clark Stadium in Fort Worth, 8 -11 a.m.
- Saturday - TCC Northwest - Fort Worth, starts at 10 a.m.
This Friday's market at Herman Clark will be the final one at that location for now. Next Friday, holiday distribution kicks off with a mega mobile market event in the parking lot of AT&T Stadium in Arlington. Click here to volunteer to help.
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Gregory Dewbrew calls it his ‘calling.’
“I’ve given my life to this,” said Dewbrew, the executive director of Harvesting in Mansfield.
The non-profit has helped feed people and stock food pantries for 21 years.
Harvesting in Mansfield partnered with the Tarrant Area Food Bank to host a ‘Mega Mobile Market’ on Thursday morning.
The line of cars waiting for a box of food stretched for three miles at one point, as members of the Army National Guard helped fill each vehicle with groceries.
“I know traffic is hard,” said Dewbrew. “We ask people to forgive us in that I know some people get upset about it. We got to help feed people. People need help.”
He says many of those in line are people seeking help from a food pantry for the first time, those out of work or with hours cutback.
“Since COVID-19, we’ve probably went up 300% in families [seeking help,]” he said.
There are several mobile food pantries taking place across DFW on Saturday morning. Here are four events:
The Wounded Warrior Project and the Dallas Cowboys organization are providing boxes full of Thanksgiving fixings, including a turkey, at Minnie’s Food Pantry in Plano from 10 -11 a.m.
Dallas Police Community Affairs will be handing out turkeys at Paul Quinn College.
The North Texas Food Bank says it’s hosting its largest mobile food distribution ‘ever’ at Fair Park, Gate Two.
And Arlington Charities will be providing boxes of food at St. Andrews Methodist United Church, also on Saturday morning.
Harvesting in Mansfield expects to feed 2,000 families this Thanksgiving, more than double the number they served in 2019.
Next month, on Dec. 15, TAFB will be at Dickies Arena in Fort Worth to distribute food with The Goodfellow Fund. Another distribution is planned for Dec. 17 at Globe Life Field in Arlington. Upwards of 6,000 families are expected at each of these events so volunteers are needed. You can sign up by going to www.tafb.org and click on 'Get Involved'.
The markets are made possible thanks to the Texas Department of Emergency Management, who graciously deployed members of the Army National Guard to TAFB in order to increase the productivity of the Mega Mobile Markets.