The OKC Mobile Market visited OakRidge Health and Wellness Academy and South Rotary Park on Friday to distribute fresh produce to community residents.
The truck, a partnership between the Oklahoma City County Health Department and St. Luke’s United Methodist Church, provides free grocery items every Friday and final Saturday of every month.
The Mobile Market arrived at the Health and Wellness Academy at 9:30 a.m. Friday. By 9:45 a.m., lines had formed before food officially began being distributed at 10 a.m. By the end of the truck’s second stop at Rotary Park around 1 p.m., nearly 400 people had been served.
“(The health department) has often given out fresh produce at events and other activities, but the Mobile Market helps us provide sustainable access to these essential needs,” said OCCHD Community Outreach Coordinator Yanet Trejo, who regularly works at the market. “For people living with low income or limited transportation, they’ve come to depend on us visiting their neighborhoods and we’re happy to see they want healthy food.”
‘Food deserts’ in Oklahoma City:While food access improves in some parts of OKC, other areas still struggle
Friday was Hunger Action Day, where organizations across the country work to raise awareness of food insecurity and fight hunger.
Some Oklahoma City residents struggle with access to fresh and nutritious food, which is key to maintaining health and reducing illness. Recent reporting showed 119,000 Oklahoma County residents live in low-income, low access “food deserts,” while nearly 51,000 residents live in very low food security.
Candice Hillenbrand, St. Luke’s mission engagement director, said the Mobile Market was planned before the pandemic, but has become needed even more.
“We have seen the needs of our community increase as the lines have grown longer,” Hillenbrand said. “Our customers show up hours before our truck does just to ensure they have the best chance at receiving plenty of food for themselves and their families.”
More:First new full-size supermarket in decades for OKC’s east side to open Wednesday
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Since it began its weekly trips in April 2020, Mobile Market has distributed nearly 800,000 servings of…