Construction changing Lawton Food Bank hours this week

Published: Nov. 15, 2021 at 6:28 PM CST
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LAWTON, Okla. (KSWO) - The Lawton Food Bank is in the process of reconstructing their pick-up drive-thru to better distribute food to the hundreds of clients that they serve.

Clients will continue to enter through the south side of the building, but instead of having to make a U-turn to get out of the parking lot, they will continue around the building and exit out of the main parking lot.

Executive Director Ellen Lechel believes the new driveway will make the food distribution safer for employees, volunteers, donators, and clients as well.

“And then, for our drivers oftentimes Monday, Wednesday, and Friday they are picking up from our retail partners, and they’re having to maneuver through distribution in order to offload those products. It’ll give everyone space to move so we won’t hold up the line when we are receiving shipments and donations. So, we’re excited about that. I think it’ll give us the opportunity to serve more people because they won’t have to wait as long,” Lechel said.

Until the upgrades are completed Thanksgiving week, the food bank will only be open Tuesday and Thursday from noon until 4 p.m. this week.

Lechel said there will be a simple way for people to pick up and drop off food on those days.

“So, instead of going up the driveway like you would normally do. You’re just going to stay on the road. We’re going to distribute from the south side of the building. There’s a dock there that we will be distributing the food from, you’ll line up on the street like you normally do, and once our volunteers guide you forward, you can come up to the dock and receive your food,” Lechel said.

With Thanksgiving right around the corner, Lechel said things will be slightly different for the food bank as they will not be handing out hams and turkeys this time around.

“With this year, we just didn’t have the same resources that we did in years past. There’s also a meat shortage, so we didn’t feel like it would be completely fair to collect only a handful of turkeys and only give them to a select few clients. So, we’re doing our best to share local resources,” Lechel said.

Although they are not handing out hams and turkeys this year, side dishes will still be available for pick-up.

“Homeland does a fantastic fundraiser where they sell a bag of holiday food. It’s got the mashed potatoes, the gravy, all of the fixings, and all the sides. So, they sell those bags, and we will pick those up and distribute those directly to the clients. We started distributing those holiday food items towards the end of October so that those that return dates would be after Thanksgiving will be able to get their holiday fixings,” Lechel said.

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