WILKES-BARRE, Pa. The demand for a fresh food distribution program in Luzerne County has grown more than tenfold in the last six months.
The Keystone Mission in Wilkes-Barre is giving out the most food it's ever given since the program started over the summer.
Box after box, volunteers at the Keystone Mission in Wilkes-Barre are preparing for one of their biggest events yet.
"I love to see the community getting active and involved, bettering their own community," said volunteer Joe Sears.
The Keystone Mission works to help people in need in Luzerne County. Over the summer, the mission launched a mobile produce market. Every third Wednesday of the month, families who register can get fresh food, including meat, milk, and produce.
The program has grown dramatically in just a few months.
"That just shows me that there is an ever-growing need out there for places like us to fulfill," said Sears.
The program started in August with 40 families signed up. Now in January, there are more than 400 families signed up.
"We've already had more signed up for next month and it's exciting to be able to see, I think, for this community, that we're able to distribute good healthy food to a needing community, so we're excited about that," said Doug Hamilton, Keystone Mission.
The food comes from the Commission on Economic Opportunity's food bank near Pittston.
Volunteers say the Keystone Mission's mobile produce market is now the largest of its kind in the county. The organization looks forward to serving as many people in the community as possible.
"Keystone Mission could not exist without volunteers. It's our volunteers who really are the lifeblood of the mission. They come in and provide us with a lot of support and help. Obviously, it takes a lot of manpower to move all this food and get it in, as well as provide all the services that we do," Hamilton said.
For more information on the Keystone Mission or to register, click here.