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For those who sacrifice: Hundreds of military families line up for massive food drive at Military Circle Mall

More than 800 military and veteran families lined up for the drive-through event, hosted by the Military Family Advisory Network.

NORFOLK, Va. — Food insecurity remains a persistent problem for a lot of people – and military families are not exempt. 

A long line of cars stretched around Military Circle Mall Saturday morning for a food drive just for military and veteran families.  

Melissa Croft was among the long line of cars waiting to get some much-need supplies.

“It helps out with the rising cost of everything out here," Croft said. "We’re new to the area, and it was quite a shock to see how expensive it is out here.” 

Hundreds of families lined up to get fresh produce, meat and canned goods. 

Holly Ward was also in line with her husband and three children.

“It’s a nice thing for military families right now," Ward said. "Food insecurity is a big deal for a lot of families, especially with the rising cost of food.” 

It’s a drive-through food bank organized by the Military Family Advisory Network.

The Network’s Associate Director of Communications, Alexandra Meyers, said research the group did in 2019 shows just how bad the issue of food insecurity among military families really is. 

“One in eight military families had experienced food insecurity. During the COVID pandemic, that number rose to one in five," Meyers said. “Military families face many battles, hunger should not be one of them.”

She said her team wanted to do something to help. This is an another way to thank military families for their service and sacrifice. It’s something they do around the country wherever there is a need.  

“Virginia to Texas to Washington State and other places in between," Meyers said.

And with the rising cost of everything, this food drive couldn’t come at a better time. 

“Food is very, very pricey right now. It’s been surprising, the last couple months," Ward said. "This is something that just kind of sets your heart at ease.” 

This isn’t the first time the Military Family Advisory Network helped out Hampton Roads families. Back in September 2021, they fed 700 families with a similar food drive at Military Circle Mall.  

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