How to feed others this Thanksgiving

Support local organizations this holiday season to make sure our community stays fed.

Workers at a table in a kitchen assembling meals.

With the help of volunteers, Central Texas Food Bank distributed almost 54 million meals last year.

Photo via Central Texas Food Bank

Thanksgiving may be all about the food, but it’s also the season of giving.

Texas is the second-most food insecure state in the nation, with ~15.5% of households reporting lack of access to affordable and healthy food from 2020-2022. According to data from Feeding America, one in six Texan children faces hunger.

The Central Texas Food Bank reports that 34% of its clients are children and teens. The City of Austin estimates that 39% of food insecure Austinites are ineligible for federal nutrition programs.

A graphic showing Texas's food insecurity rate compared to that of other states.

The USDA’s most recent data shows Texas has the second-worst food insecurity in the nation.

Graphic by ATXtoday, data from the US Department of Agriculture

Those numbers are daunting, but fortunately, there are plenty of ways to help those experiencing food insecurity locally. From mobile markets to food banks, here are four organizations you can support this holiday season.

Meals on Wheels Central Texas
This organization, dedicated to serving hearty meals to 5,000+ older adults in the area, is in need of meal delivery drivers.

Central Texas Food Bank
From assembling food packages, cooking meals, and distributing food at mobile pantries, there’s a wide range of ways you can contribute to providing meals for food-insecure Texans. (Pro tip: If you have a green thumb, you can also volunteer to assist in the nonprofit’s garden.)

Keep Austin Fed
This organization takes excess food from grocery stores, hotels, restaurants, and schools and takes it to local partner organizations for distribution. Sign up to be a food rescue runner and one hour of your time will help feed ~160 people.

Sustainable Food Center
The Sustainable Food Center supports local farmers, while also providing local fruits and vegetables for people enrolled in federal nutrition programs.

Looking for more ways to give back this season? Read our list of 30+ other nonprofits supporting Austinites.