The East Texas Food Bank and Mission Marshall are working together to host a second Emergency Food Distribution event at the Marshall Convention Center from 10 a.m. to noon Thursday, May 28.

The event is on a first come first serve basis, with 700 boxes being served at the first event hosted earlier this month, according to Mission Marshall Executive Director Misty Scott.

Scott said that due to a time limit on the assistance from the national guard, this would likely be the last emergency distribution to be organized.

“We are just trying to take advantage of the resources as much as we can, to help as many people in the community,” Scott said. “I really hope to see the same amount of people come out and take advantage of this resource.”

According to East Texas Food Banks Communications official Lauren Barnes, the drive-thru food distribution is a way for ETFB to help meet the increased demand for food assistance locally.

Barnes said that each emergency food box provides nonperishable food items to prepare up to 16 meals.

Scott said that the event will work exactly the same way as the first emergency distribution event did, with no eligibility or ID requirements.

Barnes said that households will be asked to give a verbal declaration of their name, address and income. All families will be served, regardless of where they live, their age or income.

To pick up a box for someone else, community members must provide a hand-written note from that person with their name, address, permission for you to pick up for them and their signature.

“We were already facing a hunger crisis before the pandemic hit,” said East Texas Food Bank CEO Dennis Cullinane. “Year-round, one in five East Texans, including one in four children, are at risk of hunger and the need has grown due to the pandemic.”

In April alone, the East Texas Food Bank served 2.5 million meals to over 46,000 families. Cullinane said this is a substantial increase from 2019 with meals up 49 percent and families served up 74 percent.

Scott has seen the same increase in need here in Marshall, with Mission Marshall working with a number of local businesses and organizations to work to provide food and resources to meet the increased demand.

“The last event that we had went very smoothly, but we know that the second or third distribution event in the same area tends to see people drop off,” Scott said. “I hope that the people of Marshall come out and take full advantage of this resource while we have it available.”