brought to you by Cynde C., Director of Community Relations, St. Mary’s Food Bank Alliance
In a recent direct mail piece, President and CEO Terry Shannon sent out a note to all of our donors telling them about his concern. In the note, Terry talks about the new face of our clients – middle class families who never would have thought they would find themselves needing food from a human services organization. He also talked about the incredible increase in giving to political campaigns and the affect it is having on organizations like the Food Bank. We are certainly not alone in our need for financial donations; nonprofits across the country are finding the current economic climate very tough.
While monetary and food donations decreased during the summer, demand hit a high that we haven’t seen at the Food Bank usually during the summer. Yes, while the summer is very busy for us (our busiest time of the year), this year was exceptionally high.
At the beginning of the summer, we were thinking that perhaps the economy wouldn’t change the summer distribution too much because the average number of Emergency Food Boxes distributed in May, June and July were 14,300 boxes. Then, August hit and we distributed 17,000 EFB boxes; September, 19,000 EFB Boxes. September was a 40 percent increase. Some of our partner agencies are seeing a 100 percent increase in demand for their services.
The face of the people who need food from the Food Bank is changing. And, with the current economic trends, I don’t think this trend will fade any time soon. Now we look forward to the holidays and the task to provide 10 Million Meals for a Hunger-Free Holiday.
Terry has a reason to be concerned…and so should every person who wants to see their neighbors, friends, and family thrive and rise above the current crisis.
How do you think we can tackle this challenge?