Food Pantries Struggling

February 13th, 2009 at 4:31 pm by under News

It is getting harder and harder to pay the bills and feed your family. Food pantries are also struggling to keep up with the number of people asking for assistance. They are seeing a record number of people who never required assistance before now needing help.

I was at the food pantry today at SECA in SE Grand Rapid and spoke with Mildred, the food pantry coordinator. She also informed me that some of the people needing food have jobs, but their paycheck just does not go far enough.  She was showing me the empty shelves, and I thought how can this be?  Many of the local registered food pantries do get food from Second Harvest Gleaners and they are ready to help. They distribute food all over West Michigan.

It’s hard to imagine people in our community going to sleep hungry, not able to feed their kids the nutritious meals they would like or deciding whether to pay the electric bill or buy groceries. There are always food drives going on somewhere. If you can, next time, pick up some canned goods or a box of macaroni from your cupboard and help feed your neighbor.

11 Responses to “Food Pantries Struggling”

  1. Thanks for the idea, have a nice day!

  2. Draftsman says:

    Maybe try donating something besides macaroni, too. Even those in need deserve to be able to eat healthy food. Canned vegetables and fruits are needed too. And I always try to pick up extra shampoo and toothpaste when it’s on a great deal and I have coupons, so it’s practically free to me, and people can use it.

  3. Richard says:

    I have for or five boxes of food I would like to donate but you didn’t publish an address for the food pantry.

  4. Richard says:

    My Aunt recently passed away so we would like donate all of her food stuff to a pantry

  5. Correction on the food pantry we visited was SECOM, (not SECA) South End Community Outreach Ministries. They are located at 1545 Buchanan Ave., SW in Grand Rapids. Their phone number is (616) 452-7684. If you would like to donate to a food pantry in your area you can call Second Harvest Gleaners Food Bank of West Michigan at (616) 784-3250 for a complete list. Every little bit helps.

  6. Joseph says:

    I am involved in a local food pantry for 8 years. I sat on its board for 2 years. I have seen donations fall as unemployment rises but this isn’t the biggest problem. Most of the money and food thats donated goes to Second Harvest Gleaners. Gleaners then sells this food to the food pantries for a small handling fee. Sounds good right? No that’s bad. The list they ship out each week mainly has candy and sweets on it. A few weeks ago Gleaners sent out a memo to the pantries that use their service to start ordering the candy. Gleaners position that all pantries need to forget the balanced diet notion since its old fashioned and not correct anyway. I have sat in a meeting with their representative that says soda and candy is an acceptable meal. If you want your donations to mean something donate to you local food pantry. You can get their names by calling your local church. Thats where it does the most good… not melting on Gleaner’s docks.

  7. Darcy says:

    The Center for Physical Rehabilitation, my place of employment, is celebrating 15 years of business by giving back to the community. We have four locations surrounding the Grand Rapids area: Cascade, Byron Center, Belmont and Walker. For the month of September, each location is a host drop off site for Degage Ministries. Anyone can drop off non-perishable food items, general hygiene products and clothing at any of our locations. For more information about donating, our company and the addresses to our locations visit our website at

  8. mary sunshine says:

    list for this changes,depending what people give. not all”candy”..I call BS on ” Joseph”…man does not live by beans & rice alone!!

    what’s the matter with giving out free treats to poor folks kids??

    Joseph’s idea of a good meal is a few cans creamed corn & green on that for a week buddy!

  9. Cool! Always love trying new things, this’ll be the next thing cooking!Thanks!Yuka

  10. Shawn Grago says:

    I wanted to thank you for this excellent post. I surely liked every little part of it. I have you bookmarked and will be coming back.

  11. Yeah…It’s hard to imagine people in our community going to sleep hungry and not able to feed their kids the nutritious meals

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