For some North Texans, the most challenging chore of the week is buying groceries.
As part of our series, One Crisis Away, Inside a Neighborhood, KERA explores why a lot of people in Jubilee Park drive for miles to get their groceries. Or pay the price at the corner store.
Jubilee Park, a community just north of Fair Park in Dallas, isn’t technically a food desert. That’s defined as a community that doesn’t have a grocery store within a mile radius. There is a supermarket, you just have to cross under I-30 to get there.
Lifelong resident Sherman Turner doesn’t walk or ride the bus. He prefers another option, his trusty bicycle.
“We have to go up here on Columbia to Malone’s or go to South Dallas to Martin Luther King, to Minyard’s. That’s for cars, I have to ride this bike up there,” Turner says.
Yolanda Weeks lives around the corner on Congo Street. She shops at a Kroger 15 minutes away and counts herself lucky, because she can drive.
“You gotta go travel at least 10 miles to go to a decent grocery store, that’s ridiculous,” Weeks says. “If you got no car, then you pretty much have got to buy from the little corner stores, knick knacks, you’re not really getting a full, complete meal as if you go to the grocery store and can actually prepare it yourself.”
And the experts agree. When there is limited access to fresh, healthy food, people don’t eat it. Instead, they make do with what’s available. Stacy Cherones is a dean at Paul Quinn College and is also President of the non-profit Get Healthy Dallas.
“If there are no grocery stores around, you learn how to get food other ways, you learn how to feed your family from the corner store.”
Check out this video of a Jubilee Park resident riding the bus for hours to get to Walmart and back.
Find out more here about life in a neighborhood where fresh food is hard to find.