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Nonprofit that helps keep kids fed sees increase in need during coronavirus pandemic

HopeAustin typically provides weekend meals to around 1,200 students. The founders said recently they've been serving a lot more.

LEANDER, Texas — HopeAustin is a nonprofit that provides weekend meals to students in need. 

Typically, it serves around 1,200 students in five school districts. 

But the co-founders said the needs have increased recently, with the nonprofit now serving a greater number of schools and students. 

"As of right now, there are a lot more students that are requesting meals that weren't before," said co-founder Zee Nariman.

For example, in Leander, HopeAustin usually delivers meal kits for 260 students each week. On Wednesday, the co-founders dropped off meal kits for 730 students. In addition, HopeAustin is now serving 27 LISD schools. It used to serve nine.

Credit: Molly Oak

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"In this time of crisis, we are ready to step up even more to ensure that the students who are further marginalized during this time of pandemic to secure that they are food-secure," said co-founder Monica von Waaden. 

Credit: Molly Oak

She said the nonprofit has enough food to last through the school year but needs help to make sure HopeAustin can keep students fed in the fall. 

If you'd like to donate or volunteer, visit the HopeAustin website.

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