David Weaver, executive director of the South Plains Food Bank, visited with Lubbock's First News' Tom Collins and Laura Mac Thursday morning.

Weaver said even thought the food bank is "gearing up" for its annual "U Can Share " holiday food drive, the South Plains Food Bank is still taking donations and helping people all year long.

Weaver estimated that the SPFB assists approximately 57,000 people in the 20 counties that it serves. That number represents about one out of every eight residents on the South Plains.

"We're seeing the amount of food we distribute continue to grow, and what we are seeing is there are families that are still struggling," he said.

Weaver noted that even though Lubbock has the fourth lowest unemployment rate in Texas, people are still struggling.

"We still have incredibly high poverty ratios out here and there are a lot of people still struggling. We see that a the food bank a lot, where people are working and they still need help," said Weaver.

Weaver added that 21,000 of the approximately 29,000 students in the Lubbock Independent School District qualify for the federal government's Free and Reduced Lunch Program. About one-quarter of children in Lubbock are in food insecure situations at home.

Weaver stated that about 35 percent of the homes which SPFB provides help for have at least one person who is working in them.

Every family is screened to see if they qualify for assistance before the SPFB provides them aid.

Businesses and schools wishing to participate in the "U Can Share" drive can request collection barrels and boxes but logging on to the  food bank's web site at www.spfb.org. individuals and families can also use the web site to find out how to volunteer or to make monetary donations to SPFB.

To hear all of Weaver's interview, click here:

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