Free food distribution begins May 5

Caren Steffes, a member of the Order of Malta, shows off a bag of canned and dry food being handed out earlier this spring at the Mamie George Convention Center in Richmond. Catholic Charities sponsors the monthly food giveaway between 9 a.m.-noon on the last Saturday of each month and on Tuesdays and Thursday morning. The community center will start giving away food on Wednesday evening each week, beginning May 5.

Beginning Wednesday, May 5, working low-income families in Fort Bend County will have an easier time accessing food assistance.

The Mamie George Community Center in Richmond, operated by Catholic Charities of the Archdiocese of Galveston-Houston, will begin distributing food one evening a week — on Wednesdays from 5-6:30 p.m.

“In many cases, individuals are working full-time hours but earning lower wages that won’t lift a family out of poverty. Many people with a minimum wage job need help keeping their families fed,” said Executive Director Gladys Brumfield-James.

“By adding the early evening hours, Catholic Charities can help families who can’t come to our usual food distributions held earlier in the day.”

The ongoing schedule for drive-through food distribution also includes Tuesdays and Thursdays from 9 a.m.–noon.

Families are asked to make an appointment for weekday food pick-up. In addition, food fairs open to anyone are held on a Saturday each month from 9:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m.

The next food fair is Saturday, May 22.

To make an appointment or view the food fair schedule, visit CatholicCharities.org/CovidFoodDistribution.

The need for food assistance in Fort Bend County continues to run high during the COVID-19 pandemic, Brumfield-James said.

“MGCC has surpassed all of its records for food distribution. Since the pandemic began in March 2020, MGCC provided 3.3 million pounds of food to families who drive through the food pick-up line.”

Loading cases of food into thousands of vehicle trunks takes the help of sturdy, faithful volunteers, she added.

“Especially noteworthy is regular support from the Order of Malta, a lay Catholic religious order devoted to care for the sick and poor,” she said.

In addition to providing volunteers, the Order of Malta also maintains a fund used to procure proteins and meats for food fairs at MGCC.

The Mamie George Community Center is located at 1111 Collins Road in Richmond. Other services during the pandemic include financial assistance for families in need of help with rent and other essential expenses, meal delivery to seniors, and support for women veterans.

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