North Texas Food Bank Celebrates Moms this Mother’s Day

Moms are at the heart of the North Texas Food Bank’s mission — whether visiting one of our partner food pantries to ensure their children have access to the food they need to thrive, coming alongside the NTFB as a volunteer or serving the organization as part of its staff. This Mother’s Day, we’d like to celebrate by introducing you to just a few of the dozens of mothers we encounter throughout the year.

Fei, NTFB Partner Agency volunteer

Even at just 6 years old, Fei wants to make sure her son Adam understands that it’s important to serve other people.

During a school break earlier this year, she and Adam visited North Texas Food Bank Partner Agency Brother Bill’s Helping Hand after learning about the organization through the NTFB’s website.

The pantry is set up like a grocery store so that neighbors can shop for food each Wednesday and Thursday morning (as well as one Thursday evening and one Saturday each month). The store serves around 300 families each week and provided access to more than 1 million meals last year.

Volunteers are stationed throughout the store, and Fei said she loved that even at a young age, they made sure Adam had a place he could be involved. She and Adam stood behind a table with bags of salad and other perishable foods, helping neighbors find something they could enjoy and placing it in their cart if they asked for assistance.

“I just think it’s good for kids to learn to give back to the community,” she said.

Children can volunteer along with their parents at Brother Bill’s as long as they’re at least 2 years old. Fei said she knows they are fortunate to be able to provide the meals their family needs and she was grateful to contribute at a place that is ensuring other moms have what they need for their kids.

“This is such a meaningful thing,” she said. “It’s very well organized and has been a good experience.”

Tinita, neighbor, partner food distribution recipient and Navy veteran

As a mom, Tinita says she knows how important it is to provide for her son so she’s pursuing a bachelor’s degree that she hopes will bring more stability for them in the future. Until then, she’s grateful that organizations like the North Texas Food Bank, and its partner Soldier’s Angels, provide access to food when they need a little extra help.

“I’m just trying to do what a parent is supposed to and put him first,” she says. “I’m so thankful. I’m just really thankful.”

Tinita enlisted in the Navy 30 days after 9/11 and was deployed to the coast of Iraq just seven months later. Now a veteran who lives with PTSD, Tinita receives disability but says even with the income she makes through side jobs as a notary, she simply doesn’t have enough to cover the high price of groceries and other living expenses right now.

“My money is not stretching for groceries to last the whole month like it used to,” she says.

Before learning about the NTFB partner distribution that is focused on veterans, Tinita says she often did not have enough groceries. Now that she’s able to pick up a box of food each month, she has enough ingredients to make something both she and her son can enjoy every day.

“This helps tremendously. I can go home and cook dinner tonight,” she says. “There have been times when I haven’t eaten or have eaten the bare minimum so that he can eat.”

Kathleen Petty is a communications manager for the North Texas Food Bank.