DES MOINES, Iowa — Hundreds of families in and around Des Moines who struggle with keeping food on the table received a much-needed cut of meat ahead of Easter Sunday.

HyVee, Creative Visions, and Hormel partnered to hand out five hundred free hams at Evelyn K. Davis Park in Des Moines Wednesday afternoon. First responders from the Des Moines Police Department, Des Moines Fire Department, and Iowa State Patrol also helped the organizations hand out the hams.

The drive-thru line for the free food stretched down Forest Avenue before the giveaway started. The groups eventually handed out all of its hams in under two hours.

Rep. Ako Abdul-Samad, the founder of Creative Visions, said this shows how the pandemic and inflation have made this event a necessity.

“We’ve seen middle-class families now having to go to food banks,” said Abdul-Samad. “We’ve seen individuals who never thought they would need supplemental food coming to Creative Visions and driving through here saying, ‘Hey, we needed help.'”

The holiday ham giveaway has been a tradition for the organizations since 2017.