SAN ANTONIO -- Jovanna Lopez made it her mission to help with food insecurity in San Antonio, so when people were going hungry at the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, she started making phone calls.
What You Need To Know
- Food boxes packed in Houston, sent to San Antonio
- Variety of organizations pick up boxes, add fresh produce
- Food has helped people during COVID-19 pandemic and beyond
- San Antonio woman takes us on a day of deliveries
Four months later, the system she helped put into place is getting thousands fed each and every week.
Lopez, who wears a variety of hats--from her day job at Eco Centro, to being co-founder of the People's Nite Market--will be the first to tell you that it's a team effort. But, it's her willingness to jump to help that made this project a success.
Farm to Family food boxes are packed in Houston, dropped off in San Antonio and picked up by a variety of organizations. From there, food can be added to the boxes of fruits and vegetables or just delivered to people in need. It's grown exponentially since they first started in March.
"When COVID hit, it just sort of brought everything to the surface. It was bad, you know, and I hope we've been able to alleviate a lot of that with a lot of these people that were suffering," said Lopez.
She also knows for most of the people getting this delivery of fruits and vegetables, this was the case before the pandemic hit, and unfortunately it will be the case after it's over.
"This food insecurity issue is not something that just popped up out of nowhere. It's been going on. It's something that's just been. For me, this is not sustainable," said Lopez.
These food boxes are made possible thanks to government grants, but it's going to take a more sustainable solution to eliminate the problem.
On the day we spent with her, they had a delivery set up to a community of Afghan refugees. The people had been in need of food well before the pandemic hit, and were lined up before the truck of boxes arrived.
"It's crazy, right?" said Lopez when reminded how badly those people needed those boxes.
It's all of these cases that keep Lopez focused, determined, and on course.
"I'm trying. I try," she said.