YBOR CITY, Fla. — So many of our neighbors are struggling to put food on the table as we try to rebound from the pandemic, and now we're getting a better idea of just how big the problem is.
Before the pandemic, local nonprofits were helping serve around 600,000 food-insecure people in the Tampa Bay area, but that number is now at more than a million people, and it's growing, especially around the holidays.
Feeding Tampa Bay is on pace to give out a record-breaking 85-million meals by the end of the year.
And Metropolitan Ministries says they plan to give out 50,000 food boxes by Christmas, which is double what they did last year.
It's been a team effort among local nonprofits, and they'll take all the help they can get.
Saturday morning, the Gamma Theta Omega Chapter of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority Inc. hosted a food giveaway to help out local families in need.
They called it their "Christmas Food for the Family Community Event," and they teamed up with Love First Christian Center and Tampa Bay Harvest to distribute boxes of food for families.
"We saw a need in the community, and we saw that so many people were unemployed and suffering due to the coronavirus, and there were two agencies that were able to assist us with feeding hungry people in Tampa Bay," said Elaine Bryant, President of the Gamma Theta Omega Chapter.
The chapter planned to hand out 108 boxes of food to families Saturday.