Q. Who gets food?
A. Our member agencies are responsible for determining how the food is distributed to individuals in need. Each year, 800,000 people are fed. Get a fact sheet on hunger. View Fact Sheets
Q. What kind of food do you give away?
A. The Houston Food Bank puts high priority on making wholesome, nutritious foods available to our agencies. Much of what we distribute is fresh produce, dairy products, fresh meats, and other refrigerated and frozen products. Last year, food for 59 million nutritious meals left our docks; that includes, of course, canned fruits and vegetables, pasta, fruit juices, and many other types of nonperishable foods.
Q. Where does the food bank get food?
A. Food comes to us from farmers, grocery stores and other retailers, distributors, wholesale, and other food industry sources. In addition, kind-hearted members of our community hold food drives that can bring in literally tons of food.
Q. Where does the food bank get money?
A. While we do receive gifts from corporations and foundations, as well as public grants, we rely on donations from generous individuals who open their hearts and checkbooks to help the Houston Food Bank achieve our mission of leading the fight against hunger.
The Houston Food Bank is scrupulous in making sure that our donors make a good investment. Only 5% of all of our resources are used for administrative costs.
Need Food Assistance
Q. How do I get food?
A.Call the Houston Food Bank at 832-369-9390, Mondays, 7:30 a.m. - 5:30 p.m., Tuesday - Friday, 7:30 a.m.- 9:00 p.m., and Saturday 7:30 a.m. - 4:00 p.m. We can help you identify a hunger relief agency that serves your part of town. Or check our searchable database of agencies. Search Database
Q. How old do you have to be to volunteer?
A. For safety purposes, the minimum age for volunteering is 6 years of age. Volunteers under the age of 16 must be accompanied by a parent or legal guardian. To volunteer, please complete the Volunteer Request Form.
Q. Where can I drop off food?
A. Food donations come in all sizes. If you have a few grocery bags or a few small boxes full of food that you'd like to drop off, then you can come to the lobby of the Houston Food Bank. Lobby hours are Mondays, 7:30 a.m. - 5:30 p.m., Tuesday - Friday, 7:30 a.m.- 9:00 p.m., and Saturday 7:30 a.m. - 4:00 p.m.
Larger-scale donations of food are received through our warehouse from 8:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m. Monday - Friday. Donations must be brought to the warehouse. Please call Jessica Pena before coming by: 713-547-8643. If this time slot does not work, we do have some day slots available.
Q. How do I start a food drive?
A. We are grateful to our friends in the community who hold food drives: they not only generate food - they generate awareness of the terrible problem of hunger in our community. View Host a Food Drive
Q. What food items do you need most?
A. Food contributed through food drives or individual donations must be nonperishable. The item we distribute the most is peanut butter, always a welcome donation. Protein in various forms is important, and helps us provide a nutritious blend of foods. See our list of our most needed items.
Q. Which do you need more: food or money?
A. Donating food provides a variety of nutritious, quality products for which we are grateful; however, money goes much further. The Houston Food Bank can stretch your dollar through our partnerships with the food industry. In fact, for every dollar donated we are able to obtain and distribute $6 in food - enough for three meals. Make a gift!
Q. How can my organization or church get food from the Houston Food Bank?
A. See our "Becoming a member agency" page.