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FIND Food Bank CEO hones disaster preparation skills assisting Texas recovery efforts

FIND Food Bank CEO Debbie Espinosa is assisting the Feeding America Houston Food Bank this week. Residents throughout much of the state of Texas are still dealing with water service interruptions and power outages after winter weather crippled the area's infrastructure.

At NRG Stadium in Houston, the Feeding America Houston Food Bank is setting up mass distributions to help with the food shortages.

"Sister food banks help each other in times of disaster," Espinosa told News Channel 3.

Espinosa and her teen daughter heard the call for help and headed to Texas to volunteer. It's not just a teachable moment for her teenager. Espinosa says she is using this time in Texas as a way to refresh her own skills in disaster response, then bring these lessons back home to Coachella Valley.

"It's good training for me to always make sure that I always keep my skill sets up, so our foodbank can respond when we need to, if there was a major disaster like an earthquake that happens in our area," Espinosa told Jeff Stahl in a live interview from the Houston distribution site.

"Because we are the Feeding America Regional Food Bank that serves the Coachella Valley desert region," Espinosa said, "One of the things that I like to do, along with my staff, is that we always try to stay as trained as possible for any kind of major disaster or emergency because we will be expected to respond as part of the state disaster and federal disaster networks."

Espinosa explained that the site is assisting more than 5,000 people a day. She said "this food bank has responded to some of the major hurricanes that have come through," calling the Texas food banks "very, very well versed in major disasters."

Editor's note: Debbie Espinosa has corrected some information provided for this report. The Houston Food bank had 200,000 pound of food at the super site. In comparison to FIND, that is what FIND distributes in about two full days.

MORE: How you can help Texas winter storm victims

KESQ News Team


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