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YMCA Austin to give out free produce weekly amid COVID-19 pandemic

“At a time when many are hurting and hungry, we need to do whatever we can to ensure families and communities have fresh fruits and vegetables on their plates.”

AUSTIN, Texas — Amid the COVID-19 pandemic, food bank volunteers have gotten used to seeing long lines. Hundreds of cars have lined up at distribution events in Central Texas over the past few weeks as people wait to get food.

Now the YMCA is giving away free 20-pound boxes of fresh produce every week.

It started on Tuesday morning and will happen each Tuesday through August.

The drive-thru or walk-up pickup began at 9 a.m. at the North Austin YMCA on Rundberg Lane and at 10 a.m. in East Austin on Ed Bluestein Boulevard. It will continue for as long as supplies last.

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The event is the result of a partnership with Brighter Bites and DiMare Fresh.

“At a time when many are hurting and hungry, we need to do whatever we can to ensure families and communities have fresh fruits and vegetables on their plates,” said James Finck, YMCA of Austin president and CEO. “We’re excited to be able to partner with Brighter Bites and DiMare Fresh to help our community.”

Brighter Bites director of sourcing Jennifer Boone said the partnership will ensure families in Austin have access to fresh produce at a time when they need it most.

“The program will allow us to expand our reach, and we’re grateful to DiMare for trusting Brighter Bites to distribute their product with the greatest care and consideration,” she said.

DiMare Fresh is servicing nonprofits throughout the Southwest through its facilities in Texas, as part of the USDA Farmers to Families Food Box.

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