ALAMEDA COUNTY, Calif. (KRON) — On this Good Friday, more than one thousand families in the East Bay are getting free meals.

The economy continues to reopen, but rising costs for food due to inflation have made it tough for people to manage. On Friday, the Alameda County Community Food bank’s Easter distribution helped struggling families with a meal for the holiday.

With the cost of groceries shooting up more than 10% the past year, it comes as no surprise, that although more people have returned to work during the pandemic, only to get slammed by rising inflation, reliance on the Alameda County Community Food Bank remains high.

A spokesperson for the food bank, Michael Altfest, told KRON 4, “definitely heard, you know, more vocally from our clients now that its just harder to get by and make ends meet these days.”

Three days a week, the food bank hosts a distribution at Acts Full Gospel Church in Oakland.

On Friday, families walked up and stood in line or made a pass in the drive-through for one of the 1,000 hams donated by Hormel and Safeway.

In all, food bank spokesperson Michael Altfest says the non-profit provided enough food for about 30,000 meals. He said, “we are and have been a lifeline to thousands of households over the course of this pandemic and before that.”

During the pandemic, the food bank’s distribution site had handed out more than 12.5 million pounds of food. Last month alone, it passed out 4.4 million pounds, and, at this time, one in four county residents are still food insecure.

“Just to see, you know, hundreds upon hundreds of cars in line for help really just speaks to the times,” Altfest said.