Event held in Arlington to get people signed up for COVID-19 vaccine and give food to those in need

Tarrant County and Arlington city leaders set up an event that served two purposes Saturday, it got people signed up for vaccinations, while also meeting their needs by handing out food.

Gerardo Lopez said he’s working around the clock as bills continue to pile up.

"This means a lot right now because I am working. I’m a truck driver," he said.

But Saturday afternoon, he was met with helping hands.

"I got some milk and meals, and that means a lot for me and my family," he added.

"We are trying to do a one stop shop," Arlington City Councilwoman Ruby Woolridge said.

Hundreds of cars lined up outside Greater Community Missionary Baptist Church in Arlington to receive food, along with a chance to sign up for a COVID-19 vaccine.

"Folks will drive up and then be able to register without even leaving their car," Tarrant County Commissioner Devan Allen said.

Allen and Woolridge teamed up with several local organizations to serve their community, which they said is still struggling due to the pandemic.

"This particular community has the lowest amount of COVID-19 registration and we have the highest cases in this area," Woolridge explained.

Starting Monday, all adults in the state of Texas will be eligible for the COVID-19 vaccine.

Alisa Simmons, the president of the Arlington NAACP, wants to make the process as easy as possible.

"The numbers are elevated in the African American and Hispanic communities, and communities of color, the number of people infected and succumbing to COVID-19," she explained. "We have got to have these types of events."

And at the end of the line, volunteers waited to load 1,000 boxes of food, all provided by the Chris Howell foundation.

Each box was filled with 22 pounds of fruit, vegetables, meat, and a gallon of milk to go with it.

"Many of them are not working. Many of them are laid off because of COVID. This will fill the gap," Woolridge said.

Meanwhile, it was all smiles for Lopez, who drove off with a chance to keep his family of three fed while waiting for the call his COVID-19 vaccine shot is ready.