Hungry people are everywhere in your life – from the single mom down the street to the friendly clerk at your local convenience store. A surprising number are doing something they never imagined – visiting one of our agency partner’s food shelves for the first time in their lives.
Senior citizens, struggling to make ends meet on a fixed income, are a growing segment of food shelf visitors; they are often reluctant to “take food from younger people they feel need it more than they do,” says Margaret Palan of Western Community Action in Marshall.
Suburban residents are falling into poverty as they find their resources dwindling. “Many families are transitioning and struggling with job loss,” says Ann Searles, who has seen a large increase in visits to White Bear Lake Area Emergency Food Shelf.
Working families visit Oak Park Youth and Family Center in north Minneapolis for food and community meals. “Many visit us late in the month, when their cash and SNAP resources run low,” says Debra Chavis.
College students at Ridgewater Community College use weekly food pickups to augment their limited resources. “Students who are far away from their families need us the most,” says Christie Kurth of the Willmar Area Food Shelf, which operates the campus pantry.
To find ways you can help, visit 2harvest.org.