Frozen roads, power outages and no water left many Texans — especially the homeless — struggling to find food.
The New Braunfels Food Bank suspended operations through Wednesday because of power outages at its New Braunfels and San Antonio centers.
It opened its distribution centers Thursday despite the lack of power.
Officials say the food bank has seen an uptick in food demand this week, serving 69 families Thursday and about 300 families Friday.
The food bank has 13 staff members and about 10 National Guard members already helping because of the pandemic.
New Braunfels Food Bank executive director Monica Borrego said she anticipates more families will come to the centers over the next month. The food bank also delivered food during the winter storm and will continue delivering food.
Borrego said the snow storm is a rare occurrence where staff were also in need.
“The difference is it’s affected our home as well, so it’s just been a little different in getting people to work, meanwhile they’re struggling themselves,” Borrego said. “As I expected, the staff were very helpful whether they could get here or not — like taking calls from home.”
Besides staff, the New Braunfels Trail Team 6, a charity group of Jeepers, delivered food for those homebound during the worst of the icy roads and snow earlier this week.
Borrego said the food bank needs all the help it can get, whether volunteers or donations.
“I’ve had people calling and messaging us that they just don’t have access to food right now,” Borrego said. “It feels like it leveled the playing field for everybody because everyone was affected. Monetary donations are always helpful and to plan for what product we put on the shelf. We can turn one dollar into seven meals.”
She said demand already surged because of the pandemic with so many unemployed.
The food bank’s next pop-up distribution center will be at the Tree of Life Church on Feb. 25 from 9:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m.
“We will have pop-up distributions to help meet the need,” Borrego said. “As long as there’s on-site distribution, we’re going to be here as long as we’re needed and we can all get here now. If someone needs home delivery that’s all on the website. We will make it happen.”
Pre-registration for the pop-up is required at nbfoodbank.org/cvresponse or by calling 830-327-6000
For delivered food, contact the New Braunfels distribution manager at 210-431-8424
To volunteer, people can go by the food bank or sign up online at nbfoodbank.org/ways-to-help/give-time
For donations, go to nbfoodbank.org/donate
The food bank will be open throughout the weekend, on Saturday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Sunday 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. The New Braunfels Food Bank is located at 1620 South Seguin Avenue.