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Summer Food Program kicks off in Tyler offering free meals, activities for children

Seemingly unfazed by the light rain, thunder and dark clouds Tuesday afternoon, over a dozen children participated in the first day of East Texas Food Bank’s Summer Food Program at Emmett J. Scott Park.
Most children had their faces painted and were clenching balloon accessories as they ran between the playground and basketball court. Some even had balloon umbrellas, almost like a subtle peg toward the gloomy weather.
(Read more from Tyler Paper)

East Texas Food Bank Announces Partners in Health Program

Despite increasing the medication and insulin of a patient with diabetes, Dr. Michele Bosworth found the man’s condition was only getting worse.
The patient suffered multiple heart attacks. Soon, both doctor and patient were growing weary of what could be done to improve his condition.
“One day he said to me, ‘Well, Dr. Bosworth, I can only eat what I get from the food bank,” said Bosworth, a family physician and patient safety officer at UT Health North Campus Tyler. “And I thought, wow, it didn’t really matter what I was prescribing to him. He only had the resources available to him that he could get from the food bank.”
(Read more from Tyler Paper)

Smith County inmates help grow vegetables for community

 For about nine years, Smith County inmates have been tending a garden that provides vegetables for East Texans.
The East Texas Food Bank and Smith County Sheriff's Office started this garden to help people in need in the area. Since then, it's doubled in size.
(Read and watch this story from KLTV 7)

Power of Prayer: 'Feed My Lambs' soup kitchen

For more than six months a soup kitchen in downtown Tyler has provided nourishment for the body and soul. Last July, the 'Feed My Lambs' soup kitchen opened at the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception, located at the corner of Front Street and South Broadway Avenue.
Organizer Kim Coburn says it has become a prayer answered for both the homeless and the volunteers who run the weekly feeding program.
(Read and watch this story from KLTV7)

East Texas Food Bank expands with 'More Space, More Meals' Campaign

The East Texas Food Bank is expanding as a part of its 'More Space, More Meals' campaign. 
"Through our 26 counties, we are currently serving over 22 million meals, our long-term goal is to get close to 40 million meals by 2025… this project will make that happen," said CEO Dennis Cullinane. 
The $3 million dollar project has been in talks for over four years now, and after evaluating the need, the expansion made sense. 
"We're doing a 10,000 square foot addition, which includes a nutritional kitchen, some office space, and then we're also doing five thousand feet of cold dock expansion, so a total of 15,000 feet." said Project Committee Chairman, Bryan Jacobe.
(Read more from KYTX CBS19)

East Texas Food Bank breaks ground on expansion project

More space at the East Texas Food Bank will mean more food for East Texans in need.
The food bank on Wednesday broke ground on a $3 million expansion for its capital campaign “More Space. More Meals,” designed to provide additional space to store and distribute food.
The expansion, scheduled for completion at the end of this year, will include a new volunteer and nutrition education center, expansion of the cold dock area and renovating some of the existing warehouse areas in the 3200 block of Robertson Road.
(Read more from Tyler Morning Telegraph)

Shine Your Light: East Texas Food Bank seeks to meet needs, improve health by providing fresh produce

The brightly colored plastic bins contain what some shoppers considered the prized product of the day: fresh produce.
One after the other, East Texas residents filed through the line placing as many potatoes and onions as they wanted into plastic grocery bags.
On another shelf and table, bananas and frozen blueberries were available.

“I get everything given,” said Tyler resident Bennie Johnson, 63. “It’s just a blessing. Whatever they give us, we appreciate.”
(Read more from Tyler Paper)

Ways to give back on #GivingTuesday

You've heard of Black Friday and Cyber Monday but have you heard of Giving Tuesday? 
Giving Tuesday started in 2012 and has become a movement that celebrates and supports giving and philanthropy. It is powered by social media and collaboration, and is held the first Tuesday after Thanksgiving.
(Read more from KYTX CBS19)

Spirit of Christmas food drive works to make sure everyone has a meal

It's the season of giving and many East Texans are donating to make sure everyone has a meal. 
Brookshire's Grocery Co. is even making it easy for people to donate. 
It's their Spirit of Christmas food drive happening at Brookshire's, Super 1 Foods, and Fresh by Brookshire's. Just grab a bag valued at $5 ot $10 and throw it in your grocery cart. 
Inside are non-perishable food items for families. They will be delivered to the East Texas Food Bank, and from there they will be distributed to families in need.
(Read more from KYTX CBS19)

East Texas charities need help all year long

David Kester said he hopes to volunteer at the East Texas Food Bank every Friday as part of his weekly routine. He said it can be done if he makes a habit out of it. It's a work in progress, he's usually at the food bank packing and boxing rice and beans. 
"People need help all the time," Kester said. "The more we can do to meet that need the better." 
(Read more from KYTX CBS19)

East Texas Food Bank hosts 'A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving' event

The East Texas Food Bank held its eighth annual showing of the film “A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving” Friday in the Bergfeld Park Amphitheater to celebrate Thanksgiving and to promote awareness about food insecurity. 
Kids received goodie bags filled with popcorn, toast and jelly beans just like in the movie and a backpack with nutritional data magnets from East Texas Food Bank nutrition specialists to promote healthy nutrition.
(Read more from Tyler Morning Telegraph)

Annual Charlie Brown inspired event to benefit East Texas Food Bank

East Texas children will get a chance to give back and experience Thanksgiving in the spirit of Charlie Brown during a 5:30 p.m. Friday event at Bergfeld Park, 1510 S College Ave. 

This annual holiday event, held by New York Life and the East Texas Food Bank, features a showing of “A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving,” and benefits the food bank by encouraging participants to donate peanut butter. 
(Read more from Tyler Morning Telegraph)

John Tyler, Robert E. Lee High Schools face off in 27th annual Pantry Raid food drive

All hands are on deck as students from John Tyler and Robert E. Lee High Schools go head to head in the 27th annual Pantry Raid food drive.
Over the past 26 years, students have collected over 1.2 million pounds of food, which has provided more than 1 million meals for East Texas families. Last year, the schools raised a collective 28,182 pounds of food.
John Tyler is looking to take the prize for the sixth year in a row. Since 1991 John Tyler has won 13 times, Lee has won 11 and two years ended in a tie. 
(Read more from Tyler Morning Telegraph)

Marshall, Hallsville food banks shoring up donations for Thanksgiving, Christmas

East Texas Area food banks and outreach centers are getting a jump start on the holiday season and shoring up donations for those in need.
Mission Marshall and the Hallsville Outreach Center officials said they are seeking donations of specialty holiday foods that are popular this time of year, such as sweet potatoes, pumpkin pie filling, pie crusts, cakes, frosting, candied yams, macaroni and cheese, turkeys, hams, yams, cranberry sauce, stuffing and cream of chicken and mushroom soups.
(Read more from Marshall News Messenger)

East Texas Food Bank wins Whataburger jalapeño eating contest

The East Texas Food Bank beat The Salvation Army in a jalapeño eating contest at Whataburger, 6849 S. Broadway Ave., in Tyler on Thursday.
A four-person team from each organization raced to eat as many of the spicy peppers as possible in one minute. 
(Read more from Tyler Morning Telegraph)

East Texas Food Bank sends help to Beaumont, ready for long-term hurricane recovery process

When the East Texas Food Bank asked for volunteers to go to Beaumont to help the Southeast Texas Food Bank, Manuel Gomez and Damon Smith were the first to raise their hands. The longtime friends and co-workers were not going to stand by while there were Texans in need and they could help.
They loaded up one of the food bank's box trucks and headed to the Beaumont area. 
(Read more from Tyler Morning Telegraph)

SFA community nutrition students to lead Cooking Matters program on campus

Stephen F. Austin State University students in the School of Human Sciences recently met with Christina Balduf and Kinsey Jeffers, representatives from the East Texas Food Bank, to kick off a six-week Cooking Matters program.
During a class presentation, Balduf outlined the food bank's mission and services as well as discussed hunger insecurities families in the area encounter. The food bank is a nonprofit organization that distributes food to more than 200 partner agencies in an effort to feed children, the working poor and seniors throughout 26 counties in East Texas.
(Read more from SFASU)

Jammin' Jimmy Olsen's annual food drive needs your help

Radio Host Jammin' Jimmy Olsen is back to living in a pod until he receives 20,000 pounds of food to help the East Texas Food Bank and Hurricane Harvey victims. 
Until he meets his goal, he will live in a pod and be on a hunger strike. He says," The need to help others is so great that he I will not quit, one in four children go to bed hungry each night."
(Read more from KYTX CBS19)

East Texas family fighting child hunger

It was over seven years ago that flash flooding took the lives of twenty people at the Albert Pike Campgrounds.  Among the victims, a grandmother and grandfather, along with their eight year-old grandson, Nick.
Since then, their family has been giving back to East Texas children in their honor. Friday morning, sisters Kelsey McDermott and Lacey Mullins are on a missin to fight child hunger, for Nick.
Kelsey said, "He was just a big-hearted kid."  Lacey said, "It bothered him to see others down."
(Read more from KTAL)

East Texas Food Bank helping Harvey affected areas

The East Texas Food Bank in Tyler has been more busy than normal. It's the staging area for many of the donated food items across the country. 
The food bank has been open 7 days a week, sometimes at strange hours, making sure food gets shipped out to where it's needed. 
Well over 230,000 meals have been sent to Harvey Affected areas. Currently, they are focusing on Beaumont and other surrounding areas.
(Read and watch this story from KYTX CBS19)

East Texas Food Bank on standby to assist with Harvey recovery

The East Texas Food Bank (ETFB) is helping with emergency food assistance to those impacted by Hurricane Harvey. They are partnering with other Feeding Texas food banks and Feeding America. 
ETFB Dennis Cullinane said it could take years to recover from the damage. He said both the Houston and Victoria food banks are closed, and the Victoria food bank is damaged.
"We're really letting the first responders do their work. Feed America has been in touch, he said. "We're just waiting for the call."
(Read more from KYTX CBS19)

When school’s out, rural Texas towns struggle to feed their hungry kids

Clara Crawford tapped the horn three times. Seconds later, two young boys ran down the steps of their house, their mother waving goodbye from the porch.
Each summer, most days of the week, the 86-year-old Crawford drives a 1995 Ford cargo van 35 miles to gather up about 20 hungry children in Fairview, an unincorporated community in Rusk County, and the neighboring city of Reklaw. She takes them to a program she runs at a local community center where they can play basketball in the hot sun and get a full lunch plus a snack.
(Read more from The Texas Tribune)

Texas has more kids eligible for free summer meals. Why is the state feeding fewer?

When Evelyn Delgado saw a banner outside her daughter's Houston school advertising free breakfasts and lunches this June, she figured it was an opportunity to give her 7-year-old good food and a chance to get out of the house.
Delgado used to work at a local Fiesta Mart and leave her two kids with a babysitter, before she realized that paying the sitter was eating up her paltry wages. Now a stay-at-home mom with a husband who works in maintenance, she said the summer program helps feed her kids, who are eligible for free meals during the school year.
(Read more from The Texas Tribune)

Walmart donates $100,000 to food bank's Mobile Pantry

Walmart Foundation presented a $100,000 check to the East Texas Food Bank on Friday at the Walmart Supercenter in Marshall.
"For too many people across East Texas, living with hunger is simply a way of life," said Kellie Duhr, Walmart's director of Public Affairs. "That's why our Walmart team is pleased to present this grant to the East Texas Food Bank and help continue the fight against hunger across the region. … This donation is part of Walmart's nationwide commitment to ending hunger.
(Read more from Longview News-Journal)

Society of St. Vincent de Paul opens Tyler soup kitchen in partnership with East Texas Food Bank

The Society of St. Vincent de Paul in Tyler, a Catholic ministry that has long provided for the physical and spiritual needs of local residents, has opened a soup kitchen.  The Feed My Lambs soup kitchen opened Wednesday at the facility near the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception. It is a partnership with the East Texas Food Bank.
(Read more from Tyler Morning Telegraph)

Tyler church opens soup kitchen to fight hunger

A new soup kitchen hoping to curb hunger opened in Tyler Wednesday. The Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception's Society and St. Vincent de Paul partnered up to open the first soup kitchen offering lunch in Smith County. 
The "Feed My Lambs" soup kitchen serves a hot meal to anyone in need of food on Wednesdays between 11:30 a.m. and 12:30 p.m. at the Cathedral Center at 410 South College. 
(Read more from CBS19)

New soup kitchen opens in Tyler

St. Vincent de Paul, a national organization that helps the needy, joined forces with the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception to open a brand new soup kitchen in Tyler. After six months of planning, the ‘Feed My Lambs’ soup kitchen opened its doors for the first time Wednesday, serving hot meals out of the cathedral's kitchen.
(Read more from KLTV 7)

Mission Marshall brings fresh produce to residents

Each first and third Friday of the month Mission Marshall spreads its giving across the street to the parking lot of Meadowbrook Funeral home to assist food-insecure residents of Harrison County in getting fresh produce.
"We see a variety of people at produce," said Mission Marshall Director Misty Scott. "Some come on their way to work, others are elderly or disabled. We've even had an employer come through the line and take produce to an employee whose husband had been laid off.
(Read more from Marshall News Messenger)

Whitehouse food pantry in need of donations for hungry kids

A shortage of food donations happens around this time of year across many towns, and food pantries are struggling to keep up.
Jeanie Martin with Whitehouse Food Pantry says that kids being home in the summer means some clients have a hard time keeping them fed. Growing kids need lots of food. 
(Read more from KLTV 7)

KETK and Fox 51 celebrates Nexstar Media Group Founder's Day

Nexstar Media Group is celebrating 21 years, the KETK and Fox 51 team volunteered at the East Texas Food Bank.
Currently, the food bank is running their annual summer food program and serves meals to children at more than 78 food sites in East Texas.
(Read more from KETK)

Area school districts, food bank offer free summer meals

Summer means no classes for students — and in some cases, no breakfast or lunch, either.
That's why area school districts and the East Texas Food Bank offer free summer meals to students across the region.
"It gives the children that don't have an opportunity to eat the opportunity," said Phyllis Dozier, Longview ISD's director for child nutrition.
(Read more from Longview News Journal)

Summer Food Program event features food, fun and activities

Trevor Green, 9, enjoyed his lunch alongside Mark Jaylan, 12, Kortland Jaylan, 9, and Bubba Jaylan, 7.
The boys all sat down and ate together before heading to the basketball court in City Park to play some ball.
“I’m just here for the free cheeseburgers,” Green said, with his face painted as a tiger by one of the face painters at the event.

Children from all ages came with their parents and friends to enjoy a day of activities, fun games and meals provided by the East Texas Food Bank and the city of Tyler’s parks department.
(Read more from Tyler Morning Telegraph)

ETX Food Bank Summer Food Program set to battle youth hunger

The number Smith County youth who don't know where their next meal will come from is on the rise.
One in four youth in Smith County are food insecure, meaning they don’t know where their next meal will come from.
The East Texas Food Bank is kicking off their annual Summer Food Assistance program today to provide meals to those who depend on nourishment regularly provided at school.
According to Tim Butler, the East Texas Food Banks Coordinator for Child Hunger Programs, “Texas statewide, is the sixth most food insecure state for children".
(Read and see this story from KLTV 7)

Food program aiming to fill hunger gap begins June 6

The East Texas Food Bank's Summer Food Program begins Tuesday at 11:45 a.m. on June 6 at City Park in Tyler.
The program provides meals to children in low-income areas who participate in free or reduced feeding programs during the school year.
Since the programs end when the school year is over, the Summer Food Service Program helps fill that hunger gap ensuring that children continue to receive nutritious meals during the summer, according to the food bank.
(Read more from KETK NBC56)

Mission Marshall joins effort to keep students fed during summer

Mission Marshall has teamed up with Meals on Wheels and East Texas Food Bank to provide Marshall students hot meals throughout the summer months.
"With over 75 percent of our Marshall ISD students eligible for free or reduced lunches during the school year, it just made sense to partner with East Texas Food Bank to help fill the summertime meal gap," Mission Marshall Director Misty Scott said in a statement.
(Read more from Marshall News Messenger)

With school canceled, students distribute food with extra time

The storms that came through East Texas on Saturday interrupted many gatherings, but one event went ahead as scheduled in Canton on Tuesday. 
"We have this monthly food distribution here at Crossroads Church," Youth Pastor Frank Trimble said.
In conjunction with the East Texas Food Bank, it continued without interruption as a truckload of carrots, watermelons, and cabbage were offloaded into the parking lot Tuesday morning. One ton of onions were also sitting temporarily on pallets as volunteers loaded them into grocery bags for distribution.
(Read more from KLTV7)

Editorial: East Texans want to help, so let's help in the most effective ways

East Texans just want to help. We’ve said it before - people in this region are some of the most compassionate and caring in the nation. That’s seen in agencies such as PATH, the East Texas Food Bank, Bethesda Clinic and countless others, all private sector endeavors of East Texans wanting to help their neighbors.
And now we’re seeing it in the response to Saturday’s tornadoes in and around Canton. People want to assist in any way they can.
(Read more from Tyler Morning Telegraph)

Mission Marshall Food Pantry nudges residents toward healthier living

Mission Marshall Food Pantry Director Heather Miller said she believes that all many people need to start down the path to a healthy lifestyle is a nudge - not a push. Earlier this year the pantry began to institute a healthy food "nudge" program started by the East Texas Food Bank.
"It's called a nudge because you're not forcing someone to (choose) a healthier option," Miller said, adding the Nudges program increases the exposure of the pantry's clientele to produce and healthier items. "Food Nudges have been a program with the East Texas Food Bank for about two years."
(Read more from Marshall News Messenger)

Shine Your Light Community Campaign presents more than $170K to 10 East Texas nonprofits

The ninth annual Shine Your Light Community Campaign raised more than $ 170,000 for 10 local nonprofit organizations.
This week, representatives from each of those organizations, received their nonprofit's portion of the funds, which amounted to a little more than $16,800 each.
The 2016 campaign, which ran from Dec. 14 to 31, produced the fourth highest total in the nine years since the campaign started.
(Read more from Tyler Morning Telegraph)

East Texas Food Bank sees 'busy' and record crowd

Despite normally being closed to volunteers on Sunday, the East Texas Food Bank makes a few exceptions. Especially if the joining crew of volunteers, is the largest they've ever hosted in one setting.
"It's a bigger crowd than we normally have," ETFB CEO Dennis Cullinane said. "We do Sundays upon request and this is definitely a special request."
Across the food bank's warehouse is an army of nearly 200 volunteers. Packing boxes, packing bags, and getting meals ready for the food bank. And despite Sunday afternoon being usually reserved for slower hours, this group is working fast.
(Read more from KLTV 7)

East Texas Food Bank needs volunteers for Summer Food Program

The East Texas Food Bank is seeking volunteers to help administer its Summer Food Program because the city of Tyler will be unable to provide staff as it has in past years.
Previously, the food bank provided the food and the city provided the staff to supervise the program and provide recreational activities for low-income families. However, the city cannot do that this year because of budget and staffing cuts.
(Read more from Tyler Morning Telegraph)

ETX Food Bank Summer Food Program at risk after city budget cuts

The East Texas Food Bank’s Summer Food Program, staffed with the help of the City of Tyler, may be at risk after budget and staffing cuts. The program provides nutritious meals for kids ages 1-18 with more than 70 sites throughout East Texas. The summer food program has been up and running for twelve years now - and those at the bank say the quality is at risk.
(Read and watch this story from CBS19)

Brookshire's breaks world record at East Texas Food Bank

“Eye of the Tiger” played over the sounds of a cheering crowd and the beeping boom lift that elevated executives to the top of a record-breaking canned food pyramid.
Clad in safety harnesses, Brad Brookshire, chairman and chief executive officer of Brookshire Grocery Co., and Dennis Cullinane, executive director of the East Texas Food Bank, reached the top of the pyramid and gently placed last few cans atop the towering structure.
It was three days in the making and they believe it will be record breaking.
(Read more from Tyler Morning Telegraph)

East Texas Food Bank, Brookshire's to break world record

Brookshire’s is aiming to land its name in the Guinness Book of World Records by building the world’s largest canned food pyramid. Community volunteers will use 36,000 cans to assemble the 12-foot-tall pyramid, with a 17-by-17 foot base.
The project is aimed to help raise awareness about hunger in East Texas. 1 in 4 children and 1 in 5 adults in East Texas do not know where their next meal is coming from. Afterward, the cans will be donated to the East Texas Food Bank, providing more than 30,000 meals to those in need throughout 26 counties the ETFB serves.
(Read more from Tyler Morning Telegraph)

1 in 5 children going hungry in East Texas

The East Texas Food Bank says hunger is a problem a lot closer to home than most think.
"If we're going to take a step closer to solving the problems of hunger and poverty in America and East Texas, then our children and people need to have a foundation they need for good health and that's a nutritious diet," Dennis Cullinane, CEO, said.
The food bank is responsible for filling more than 200 food pantries around East Texas. They say the demand seems to grow more and more with every new year, now having close to 75,000 children in East Texas food insecure.
(Read and watch this story from KETK)

The Tyler Parks and Recreation Department invites the public to fling a disc
The Tyler Parks and Recreation Department is inviting players of all levels to fling a disc for the East Texas Food Bank during the 2015 Ice Bowl Disc Golf Tournament on Saturday, Jan. 21. The event will be held at Lindsey Park located at 12557 Spur 364 W.  Registration forms are available at the Parks Department office at 2000 W. Front St. or online at under the blue “Events and Programs” tab.
Registration begins at 9 a.m. The fee is $25 per player for participants 18 years of age and older. For participants ages 17 and younger, the fee is $15 per player. A player package is provided for each participant. Tee time is 10 a.m.
(Read more from Tyler Morning Telegraph)
Brown baggers filling needs
While most everyone else was at home in front of a warm fire on Saturday, 40 family and friends from Brown Elementary spent their day working for others.
Brown Elementary PTO planned a “Family and Friends Work Day” at the East Texas Food Bank and the turnout was great.
Keeping things fun and friendly warmed up the cold building.
“We are all working together and there is competition and camaraderie and we are laughing and talking and all the ages groups are working together, on whatever task them give us to do that day,” Principal Valencia Ray said.  
The group was extremely productive. They filled 3,432 bags of rice which prepares 2,860 meals and packed 143 boxes of their bagged rice. This raised the maximum allowed for the month of $150 toward the school’s BackPack program.
(Read more from Tri County Leader)
Shine Your Light total tops $170K; will benefit 10 local nonprofits
The ninth annual Shine Your Light Community Campaign raised more than $170,000 for 10 local nonprofits.
This year’s campaign, which ran from Dec. 14-31, produced the fourth highest total in the nine years since the campaign started.
The contributions will support People Attempting To Help (PATH); The Mentoring Alliance – Boys & Girls Clubs of East Texas; Samaritan Counseling Center; Meals On Wheels Ministry; Alzheimer’s Alliance of Smith County; Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASA); East Texas Food Bank; Bethesda Health Clinic; The Salvation Army; and Children’s Advocacy Center of Smith County.
(Read more from Tyler Morning Telegraph)