A number of viewers reached out to KATC yesterday and today, after dozens were turned away from food distribution sites.
On Saturday, Focus Foods was distributing frozen and shelf-stable foods for Lafayette children. But families were turned away from at least two sites - Live Oak Elementary and Acadiana High - before they got their boxes, they told us.
We called Focus Foods and were told that the turn-out was a lot higher than expected, so a one-time emergency meal box distribution will be conducted Monday, June 14, from 2:00 pm – 6:00pm at the following locations:
· Acadiana High School, 315 Rue Du Be’Lier, Lafayette
· Alice Boucher Elementary School, 400 Patterson St., Lafayette
· Live Oak Elementary School, 3020 N. University Ave., Lafayette
· Southside High School, 312 Almonaster Rd., Youngsville
So what happened?
In past weeks, only about 20 percent of the people who registered for meal boxes actually went to pick them up, a spokesman said. Saturday's turn-out was a lot higher.
“We regret our misunderstanding of the turnout we saw on Saturday – plain and simple,” said Jeff Landry, founder and CEO of Focus Foods. “We use every tool at our disposal to anticipate the weekly turnout at each of our distribution centers. On Saturday, we were prepared to serve twice the number of families than we served the previous week, and we still ran short. At least two sites had run out of frozen entrees by 1:00pm, so we made the decision to shut down and return on Monday with additional complete meal kits. We apologize to the community for this inconvenience, and we will strive to improve our forecasting with this valuable lesson learned."
We were there in Vermilion Parish for today's Focus Foods distribution, and the events seemed to run smoothly. We had crews at the Erath and Abbeville sites, where we saw no families turned away. For information on the Vermilion Parish program, or to register, click here.
For information on the Lafayette Parish program, or to register, click here.