South LA nonprofit community staple stepping up to make sure hundreds don't go hungry

SOUTH LOS ANGELES (KABC) -- With so many people out of work due to the coronavirus pandemic, putting food on the table is a challenge for many families, but some local groups are stepping in to help.

An organization that's been serving the South Los Angeles community for more 25 years is making sure many families in need will be able to put food on their tables.

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The staff at A Place Called Home loaded up grocery bags and boxes Thursday morning with food and other essentials at their South Central Avenue headquarters. They say the need is growing.

"We are seeing the changes. We're seeing the unemployment rate is affecting families and we are serving families that do not get any government benefits, so they need the most support at this point," said Gilbert Radillo with A Place Called Home.

The L.A. Regional Food Bank and private donors are providing tons of food. Private donors have also stepped up to pay for the food delivery.

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SoCal truckers: Many truck drivers are independent contractors, which means they do not have employer protection and are experiencing wage, job loss due to the slowdown of the ports during the coronavirus emergency.


"It's keeping us working in the field and at the same time we're doing something pro-active in helping the communities that can't go out of their homes to purchase groceries or have economic hardship that they don't have the funds to actually purchase groceries," said Edgar Lopez with Groceries Deliver 2U.

And for those receiving the groceries, they are grateful for the help.

"And even if we have money, the stores, some of the food is expensive now. I don't have a job, they cut my time and it's hard," South Los Angeles resident Reyna Mendez said.

A Place Called Home helped 200 families on Thursday. Next week, the organization says it will probably have to take care of at least 600 families.

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Food bank workers are on the front lines of the battle against food insecurity during the coronavirus pandemic.

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