CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas — Senior Kedran Wade worked at BJ’s Restaurant and Brew house until the restaurant industry hit a huge decline in business amid Coronavirus related closures.
“I’ve been out of a job for about a week and a half now,” said Wade.
But he didn’t seem to be the only Islander who lost a job because of the pandemic. Lots of students working in non-essential businesses while going to school are now out of work and are now struggling to make ends meet. That's why Texas A&M University-Corpus Christi stepped up to help its Islander community by giving each student two bags filled with groceries and toilet paper.
“This is probably the best thing that’s happened in like the last week and a half,” said Wade.
Last week, the university gave away 118 bags, running out in minutes. So this week they assembled twice as many. All 240 bags were distributed Thursday at the college's food pantry.
“Fruits, canned vegetables, canned soups, some rice, some beans some pasta,” said Julie Shuttlesworth, TAMUCC Communications Specialist.
A huge donation from HEB and a delivery from the Coastal Bend Food Bank made it possible for the university to give out so much, in a time when their students need it the most. Students patiently waited in a line that snaked around buildings making sure they kept six feet distance from each other.
“Some of those businesses deemed non-essential and we know a lot of our students have lost their employment and they still have the bills that they have to pay so this is kind of an extra safety net,” said Shuttlesworth.
Shuttlesworth says they plan to give away the food bags on a drive-by basis next week. Students can pull up in their cars, someone will put the bags in their trunks and they can just drive away.
“It’s great to know that I go to a university that cares for the students here and does as much as they can for us,” said Wade.
Texas A&M - Corpus Christi plans to have their next Food drive on Thursday April 16, 2020 at 11 AM.