D.C. food bank provides facilities, space to help more

Like so many others, Hannah Hawkins is simply blown away by the new capitol area food bank.

Hawkins runs a local charity called Children of Mine that helps feed families in need.

“I have to service thousands of hungry families every day. I look into hopeless faces every day,” she said.

But that hope is being restored with a new food bank, which means there's more food to go around.

Now, there's double the space for food storage and a new kitchen for healthy cooking classes and even a bigger parking lot.

“You can roll up your van, or your van or your car, and won't bump into anyone. You don't have to rush out to get to your car so willie lump-lump or pop smirckle can get in, it is awesome,” Hawkins said.

One of the most important parts of this brand new facility are these very large refrigeration and freezer warehouses. This is where some of the more than 66 million pounds of food will be distributed over time.

“It's been a long time putting all of this together, the fundraising and actually building the building, but it’s very uplifting to see our agencies in here and being happy and taking all of our food away to those that really need it,” said Food Bank COO Mark McCaffrey.

The new food bank cost $37 million to build, but officials say it was necessary. Food bank Chief Operating Officer Mark McCaffrey says in the past two years calls to their emergency hunger line have gone up 200 percent, so the need is very real.