Record-breaking number of families visit food bank ahead of Thanksgiving

Single day record set Tuesday

Community Food Bank

TUCSON, Ariz. (KOLD News 13) - The Community Food Bank of Southern Arizona is making sure thousands of families don’t go hungry this holiday season and set a new single day record Tuesday after serving 2,339 families.

“I just can’t believe it. It’s insane. I mean the lines, the people. There’s got to be thousands and thousands of people here,” said Mary Shelton, as she waited in the food bank’s drive-thru line.

Shelton has visited the food bank for more than 20 years. Seeing so many people needing food brought her to tears.

“It’s emotional, there’s so many people in need. I mean it’s like I’ve never seen. It’s just scary,” she said.

Cars lined the Kino Sports Complex parking lot as far as the eye could see.

“Sitting in my car getting teary eyed, because ya know, there’s people that need help,” said Hope DiCampli, who picked up food for her friend.

The Tuesday before Thanksgiving is always the food bank’s busiest day of the year, however turnout skyrocketed by more than 1,300 families compared to last year.

“It’s very tough to see this kind of demand. I think we all wish it wasn’t happening this way. I think we’re really appreciative for the community support,” said Norma Cable, the public information officer for the Community Food Bank of Southern Arizona.

The support has helped the food bank get through the pandemic and now the holidays.

“Under the circumstances right now it has been kind of tight, so we are thankful for this opportunity,” said Everett Evans, before picking up food.

His wife, Sylvia Evans, also shared her gratitude.

“We have a lot of people in our family, so I just thank God for letting us come out here and get food. Friday is my birthday. The day after thanksgiving so it’s a blessing to me,” Sylvia Evans said.

The food bank will be closed on Thanksgiving Day. Food distributions will start back up at the Kino Sports Complex Dec. 1.

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