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Texas’ Food For Families food drive inspires people to help and inspire

Texas’ WACO (KWTX) aliments for families With data still being tallied, 2022 is already a record-breaking year, and days later, we’re starting to uncover even more stories about the people who put the work into making it such a huge success.


Merri Zilka, 73, a former Speegleville native who now resides in Alvarado, has been presenting a generous $10,000 check at the KWTX drop-off location for the past ten years. She claimed that the reason she continues to do it each year is because she had needed assistance from a food pantry. Merri recalled, “I remember when I was young and had my kids, at first, we had some difficult times and I received support and now I’m able to help others, so I do.” Merri claimed that no matter how big or small a donation, contributing makes her feel happy and that anyone may experience that feeling.

Merri responded, “Whatever you can do is fine.” “Whether it is one dollar or $10,000 doesn’t matter. It is irrelevant. It’s important to genuinely donate.


13-year-old eighth-grader Mariah McBride attends McGregor Junior High. Three years ago, she began saving her spare change in order to give to others in need. When she would pass by folks on the side of the road, she would think, “I should start saving money to help them so that others may have food.” Mariah spent $123 by emptying two full piggy banks. And contributions other than money were made to make the biggest one-day food drive in Texas a success.


Athletes from high schools, clubs, bands, Boy Scouts, Masons, businesses, and individuals, to name a few, all volunteered their time at donation locations. 29-year-old Terry, a person with intellectual challenges, visits Food For Families at the KWTX Waco site every year. He sets up his wheelchair at the table right next to his mother and spends hours sorting food. Terry told KWTX, “I like to help people.


Ian and Cole Watson, twins aged 11 from Whitney, joined the Masons and were assigned tasks. They helped sort donations for local pantries after unloading donations into grocery carts, pushing them across a scale to determine their weight. Cole stated, “I enjoy supporting individuals. “I like giving aid to those who are in need of food and other necessities.”

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