Local Food banks Ocean county NJ - stock shelves are close to bare

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  1. hvactec
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    hvactec VIP Member

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    Demand rising at local food banks

    TOMS RIVER – It was 9 a.m. and already there was a line of vehicles outside the Ocean County Hunger Relief warehouse.

    It’s always like this on the third Wednesday of each month at the nonprofit food bank, said Joe Latif, the warehouse manager.

    On that day, representatives in the 28-member food bank network journey to the site to collect pallets of food.

    Those local pantries in-turn redistribute the food to neighborhood families.

    Demand for that food is growing. It has been growing for four years now, hunger relief officials said. Conversely, stock shelves are close to bare and donations are dwindling.

    The donations are slowing down at an alarming rate.

    “Never seen it this bad before,’’ Latif said Wednesday. “Not only are our in-kind contributions but the monetary donations are way down. We have to pay the bills for the overhead and utilities, too.’’

    That view is the consensus of food pantry volunteers and anti-hunger advocates in the region.

    More people are going hungry than in the past 70 years, they said.

    Latif said he has stacks of statistics to back up those claims.

    About 6,000 people per month in Ocean County ate food distributed from Latif’s warehouse in 2010, he estimated.

    “We had an 86 percent increase in food distribution between 2007 and 2009,’’ he said. “If we have to close up shop, that’ll affect about 75,000 people a year.’’

    No longer are the food pantry customers primarily people who are underemployed or unemployed, said Ellen Koment, a spokeswoman for the FoodBank of Monmouth and Ocean Counties.

    “A lot of the clients are part of the working poor,’’ she said.

    Additionally, research conducted by the food bank shows of those households that receive emergency food in the two counties, 45 percent of them are families with children.

    The FoodBank of Monmouth and Ocean Counties distributes an estimated 7 million pounds of food annually to more than 260 satellite sites on the Shore.

    FULL STORY Demand rising at local food banks | The Asbury Park Press | APP.com
     
  2. uscitizen
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    uscitizen Senior Member

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    Must be a lot of those high charity donation republicans there.
     

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