We have waited in line for two hours,” says Theresa, or Terry niece Susie calls her, “However, it is worth it to get the food we need for the month.” On a cold Saturday morning, the cars are lined up around the block like a snake. It’s a first come, first serve basis at the food distribution made possible by the Tyson Foods grant. Close to 12,000 lbs. of food will be distributed with the help of volunteers made up of veterans, Guadalupe Regional Medical staff and Seguin high school students. As a result, bringing hope for the holidays to families in need, like Susie and her aunt Terry.
Terry and Susie are both receiving disability and heard about the food distribution through the County Indigent Health Care Program (CIHCP). The CIHCP is a local program for individuals in Texas, who are low income and ineligible for Medicaid. Because of the program both Terry and Susie are able to get medical assistance and help with prescription medication as needed.
“The coordinator at the hospital let us know we can get vouchers to come here and pick up food delivered by the San Antonio Food Bank,” says Susie. “The foods from the Food Bank help tremendously as my wife and I make too much money for Food Stamps, but not enough to stretch for food.” Susie’s wife works in Accounts Payable at a local Manufacturing facility. The money she makes only provides enough money to pay the bills, leaving little to nothing to pay for groceries.
However, Aunt Terry does receive Food Stamps, but only a mere $15 dollars a month, which at times “angers” her. “I have worked all my life, up until I couldn’t,” she says, “then, after my husband died I had nothing and to get only $15 if that, makes me angry.” As tears filled her eyes Susie reached over to hug her aunt. Though Terry states she may be angry, she insists she is still very thankful for what she does have with the help of her niece and the food she has received.
In Seguin, about 22% are living in poverty based on the United States Census Bureau, with Susie and Terry being a small margin. “I know plenty of other people who struggle to work and put food on the table,” Susie says, “two of my close friends who work still struggle each day, sometimes things just aren’t enough.”
Though Susie and Terry have very little compared to others, they still feel blessed with what they have. “We are very grateful to come here or go to the New Braunfels Food Bank and get food items we need to provide us with the staples each day to live,” Susie says, “this has helped not only my wife and I, but my aunt as well to have a stocked pantry each day.”
Through the Tyson Grant, the San Antonio Food Bank is able to reach our Guadalupe County residents each month by providing fresh produce and staple items to keep the community in need nourished. “I thank God every day for you [Food Bank donors of food, time, money and voice],” Terry says, “you are the reason I am able have food in my stomach at the end of the day so thank you.”