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Thousands of cars form lines to collect food in Texas

Organizers say the surging COVID-19 pandemic has increased the need for food bank distributions.

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Thousands of people lined up for groceries at a food bank distribution event in Dallas, Texas, this weekend, with organizers saying the COVID-19 pandemic has increased need in the city.

North Texas Food Bank distributed more than 600,000 pounds of food for about 25,000 people on Saturday, according to spokeswoman Anna Kurian. There were 7,280 turkeys distributed to families, Kurian told CNN.

Photos provided by NTFB show thousands of cars lined up for NTFB's Drive-Thru Mobile Pantry at Fair Park. Kurian said the need for food "has certainly increased" with the pandemic, with Texas last week becoming the first U.S. state to report 1 million cases of coronavirus.

"Forty percent of the folks coming through our partners doors are doing so for the first time," she said.

"I see blessings coming to us cause we all struggling. And I appreciate North Texas helping us out," Dallas resident Samantha Woods told KTVT as she waited in her vehicle.

"It really is amazing and I thank God that I was able to get in the line this morning."

In another car, one woman told the station she had been struggling: "I haven't been working since December. I can't find a job, they cut off my unemployment — it's a big deal. It's a real big deal."

NTFB President Trisha Cunningham said she is proud of her team and the community "for providing some hope and care during these extraordinary times."

"It was quite a humbling scene to see so many in need," she told CNN.

NTFB has several mobile pantry events scheduled throughout the week.