How these Friends are Making Healthy Food Accessible to Texas Families Participating in SNAP

Beth Keel (left) and Jovanna Lopez at their StoryCorps recording on August 9, 2018 in San Antonio, Texas.

Beth Keel worked as a landscape superintendent, but after an unfortunate injury, she was physically unable to continue in her position. That was during the Great Recession, so finding a new job was a challenge. She shares how she turned to the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) and local food pantries to help her survive during that period of time.

Beth’s best friend, Jovanna Lopez, also recalls when she struggled to pay rent and have enough money to eat back when she was in college.

“We realized that without the proper nutrition, people are not able to function well.” — Jovanna Lopez

Now, they work together to ensure that families across San Antonio don’t face the same hardships to put food on the table that they once did. They are bringing fresh fruits and vegetables to the city’s low-income families through a night market that accepts SNAP benefits.

We hear first from Beth.

Story Corps logo

This story was recorded and produced by StoryCorps, a national nonprofit whose mission is to preserve and share humanity’s stories in order to build connections between people and create a more just and compassionate world, with funding from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation.

Originally posted on September 26, 2018.

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In Texas, 14% of residents participate in SNAP.

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In Texas, 23.8% of children are food insecure.


In Texas, 15.7% of the overall population is food insecure.

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