Catholic Charities’ Mamie George Community Center in Richmond Becomes Houston Food Bank Neighborhood Super Site, Will Serve Many More Families During Pandemic

Brief facts:
• Catholic Charities’ Mamie George Community Center in Richmond designated as Houston Food Bank Neighborhood Super Site
• Food distribution will expand to 50% more families
• Large-scale food distribution moves to Tuesdays only, 11 a.m.-5 p.m., starting June 30, 1111 Collins Road, Richmond, TX 77469

A volunteer helps at Catholic Charities' Mamie George Community Center food distribution.

A volunteer helps at Catholic Charities’ Mamie George Community Center food distribution.

Beginning Tuesday, June 30, Catholic Charities’ Mamie George Community Center (MGCC) will serve as one of the Houston Food Bank’s Neighborhood Super Sites, hosting large-scale food distribution to hundreds of area low income residents who are struggling even more to keep food on the table during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Nearly one in four people living in Richmond-Rosenberg lives in poverty – the highest poverty level in Fort Bend County – so economic loss from the pandemic is especially brutal in this area. MGCC is located in the zip code with greatest need.

Before the pandemic, MGCC’s food pantry – Trini’s Market, a Houston Food Bank partner – provided 567,000 pounds of food in the last year through Saturday food fairs and weekday “shopping” in a grocery store-style environment. When the pandemic began, MGCC transitioned to drive-through food distribution, when volunteers loaded an assortment of items into vehicles, while maintaining safe distance to prevent the spread of COVID.

MGCC is on track to surpass its pre-pandemic annual food distribution total sometime this summer. During three-hour food distributions on Tuesdays and Thursdays, MGCC served up to 1,000 families per week. As a Food Bank Neighborhood Super Site, MGCC will be able to serve up to 1,500 families on one day alone – on Tuesdays from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.

“We will be serving 50% more families, thanks to our expanded partnership with the Houston Food Bank,” said Gladys Brumfield-James, MGCC’s executive director. “We are thrilled that we will be able to provide a consistent selection of nutritious food to more people in need.”

Each family will leave with up to 60 pounds of food items: non-perishables (e.g., canned goods), fresh produce, frozen meats and fresh milk.

“MGCC is grateful for our wonderful volunteers who remain at our side to feed hungry families,” said Brumfield-James. “We’re especially thankful for the Order of Malta, which provides as many as 10 volunteers during each shift.”

The Order of Malta is a lay, religious order of the Roman Catholic Church, dedicated to work with the sick and the poor. Volunteers from a variety of other organizations round out MGCC’s need for assistance during food distribution. Up to 35 volunteers are needed for the Super Site.

Families and individuals in need of food assistance should report to Mamie George Community Center, 1111 Collins Road, Richmond, TX, 77469, no earlier than 10:30 a.m. on Tuesdays. They will be directed by police officers and volunteers to staging areas to wait for service. Food distribution runs from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Families must register in advance through the Houston Food Bank’s system by texting 94502 with the letters HFBNSS as the message. They will then be directed to fill out a form with information that’s kept confidential. Families should be ready to show the survey completion screen when pulling into the MGCC parking lot.

For information, visit CatholicCharities.org/COVIDFoodDistribution. Anyone interested in volunteering should contact Dottie Bateman, 281-202-6222, dbateman@CatholicCharities.org.