ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – As New Mexicans get ready to sit around the dinner table this Christmas, local food banks say many are experiencing food insecurity as a result of the pandemic. Going into the holiday season, they say thousands have come forward to ask for help just to get food on the table.
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In the past two years, people have lost their jobs and even their homes throughout the pandemic. As a result, food banks around New Mexico, like the Storehouse, say more people have reached out in need, including families.
“A lot of families go hungry and before the pandemic, it was 1 in 4 children are going hungry and now it’s 1 in 3 children, so the need has definitely increased,” said Jill Beets with Storehouse New Mexico. “New Mexico also ranks along the worst for adult food insecurity.”
The Storehouse says on average, they support more than 50,000 New Mexicans with meals. This week, the Storehouse distributed around 150 hams to families in need that were donated by Albertson’s Market, along with carts full of groceries.
“We gave out hams because here in our country, often times, the holiday is built around a meal and families,” said Beets. “Even low-income working families really want to build their holiday around a special meal.”
Roadrunner Food Bank is also seeing a high community need for meals this holiday season. Earlier this week, they served more than 900 households at their pre-Christmas event.
Roadrunner’s next food distribution is planned for Tuesday, Jan. 4 at 9 a.m. at EXPO New Mexico. The food bank will also resume donations on Monday morning during business hours.