Leading SA: San Antonio Food Bank President, CEO discusses Hunger Action Month, how to help

Eric Cooper joined Leading SA on Sunday; volunteers needed

The San Antonio Food Bank helps more than 100,000 families across our community, and the need doesn’t appear to be fading away anytime soon.

Eric Cooper, president and CEO of the San Antonio Food Bank, joined Leading SA on Sunday to talk about Hunger Action Month and ways to help.

The food bank gave out 21 million meals over the course of the summer. Cooper said it wouldn’t be possible without the help of the community.

KSAT Community also partnered with the food bank for the KSAT Pigskin Classic, and donations looked great.

“[This] wouldn’t happen without a lot of people donating to corporations, churches, clubs, schools, and everyone doing their part. But to have some fun over the weekend with the Pigskin Classic to raise some food and funds. You know, it’s what back to school is all about. But we are going to be busy as we get back to school,” Cooper said.

The food bank saw a significant need from all the kids who were out of school for the summer. Cooper said now, they need to shift gears to continue providing for those students as they return to the classroom.

“The schools will do an incredible job now that that weight and responsibility is off the San Antonio Food Bank to make sure kids are nourished for breakfast and lunch during the summer. Schools will be providing that. And so, we’ll shift our strategies to more after-school programs...,” Cooper said.

The high summer temperatures have also played a part in the community needs from the food bank.

Cooper said they’ve also seen a spike in seniors needing homebound deliveries.

“With the summer heat, we’ve seen a little bit of a spike in the number of seniors needing homebound deliveries too, struggling to get out... [We’ll also] gear up for the holidays, which’ll be an opportunity for lots of volunteers to come in and help us weather pack in bags, delivering food, working in our kitchen’s farm. Lots of opportunities for folks to get involved as we get back to school,” he said.

Cooper expanded on volunteer opportunities, encouraging community members to make time in their busy schedules to give back.

“I think schedules get a little busier and so, we see a decrease in the number of volunteers. We can really use the help,” Cooper said.

Volunteers of all ages are needed and Cooper said you can pick out a schedule that works for you.

If you’re interested, visit the food bank’s website here.

About the Author

Max Massey is the GMSA weekend anchor and a general assignments reporter. Max has been live at some of the biggest national stories out of Texas in recent years, including the Sutherland Springs shooting, Hurricane Harvey and the manhunt for the Austin bomber. Outside of work, Max follows politics and sports, especially Penn State, his alma mater.

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