Changes coming to Food Bank’s Drive-Thru Emergency Pantry

Local News

PHARR, Texas (KVEO) — The Food Bank of the Rio Grande Valley says it will now be requiring pre-registration for their Drive-Thru Emergency Pantry (DTEP) program.

Since the beginning of the pandemic, the Food Bank of the Rio Grande Valley has provided 25 million meals to those in need. One of the ways they put food on the table is through DTEP.

DTEP is held every Wednesday at the Food Bank in Pharr, from 7 a.m. to 10 a.m., or until the food runs out.

To make things quicker and easier for clients, the food bank is making some changes to and adding a little holiday spirit to the program.

The program has distributed nearly 6 million meals and weekly provides 700 families with up to 20 meals. The food bags given out include things like fresh produce, protein, and milk.

Clients wanting to pick up the bags will now have to pre-register before stopping by. Officials with the food bank say the change will give clients a better experience.

“This is all new to us. We’ve never had emergency drive-thru pantries. We’ve never had a pandemic, so any step that we can implement that will make things more efficient, especially for the clients. We’re here every day giving out food, and we want to make sure our community is served in the most efficient manner possible,” says Stuart Haniff, Chief Executive Officer, Food Bank RGV.

To pre-register you must call the food bank at (956) 682-8101 and select ‘option 2’. You will need to provide some information like a driver’s license or ID, address and date of birth.

You only need to register once and can participate in the program once every 30 days.

During Halloween, and the upcoming Thanksgiving and Christmas holidays, the DTEP Program will be holiday-themed. This will provide snacks and candies for the kids and full Thanksgiving meals with turkey and all the trimmings to families.

Food Bank officials say they want to go a little over and beyond providing a little holiday hope and spirit to their clients.

The food bank is looking for donations through their Coronavirus Resources Readiness and Response Campaign, which was started at the beginning of the pandemic to help them not only meet the need but beat the need in the community. 

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