DES MOINES, Iowa -- Des Moines' emergency food pantry network is seeing
demand up 20 percent over last year. Need for food is at record levels.
New numbers specifically from October show a 15 percent spike in
individuals served compared to numbers from last October, which were
also high. In October 2010, the Des Moines Area Religious Council
provided food for 3,602 families.
"At this rate, we are on pace to provide over 1.62 million meals during
2010," said the Rev. Sarai Schnucker Rice, DMARC executive director.
KCCI visited one of DMARC's 12 busy pantries Tuesday. Constance Jones,
who has received food from the pantry for more than a year, said she has
seen the pantry get busier.
"Times are really hard and people really need the help," Jones said.
"People with limited income are making difficult choices, such as
selecting medicine over food or food instead of clean diapers," said
Rice. "DMARC is able to serve families in need thanks to generous
in-kind donations of food items and thanks to cash gifts. Cash is
especially important because we can use it to purchase food from the
Food Bank or wholesale, allowing us to buy about 2/3 more food for every
dollar that a food donor might spend."
Lynnette Thornton made her first stop at the pantry Tuesday. She told
the workers how grateful she was for the food.
"If it weren't for places like this, I don't know what people would do.
They would probably starve. There is a lot of starving out in the world
now so I think it's really nice. I really do," Thornton said.
How To Help
DMARC is asking for additional cash and donations:
# Cash donations may be donated online at the DMARC website:
# Cash donations may also be mailed or dropped off at the DMARC central
office: 3816 36th Street, Suite 202, Des Moines, Iowa 50310.
# Food donations may be dropped off at the DMARC central warehouse: 3816
36th Street, Des Moines, Iowa 50310. For a complete listing of the most
needed items, please click here.