CEDAR CITY, UTAH – A local food pantry says its shelves are almost bare, and managers worry about being able to provide meals to the nearly 135 families who depend on their supply.
Managers at the True Life Center food pantry rely on donations from the community to feed those in need, but those donations, and the shipments from the Utah Food Bank, aren’t adding up.
“Donations kind of go up and down,” said pantry manager Mary Denman. “But right now, we’re kind of low.”
The shortage is evident by the empty shelves and freezers in the small room in the back of the building. Denman said if they don’t get some large donations in the next couple weeks, they may have to turn people away.
“They’re looking to someone for help, and we’ve put ourselves out there to give them help, then if we don’t have it, then it’s hard,” said Denman.
In a post on social media, a community member wrote about the need. That post has sparked several donations, but True Life Center Pastor Pete Akins says the issue is county wide. Akins sits on the board for the Iron County Care and Share.
“Grocery prices are through the roof,” said Akins. “Everybody knows that milk is more expensive than it used to be, meat is more expensive than it used to be. And we’re all just trying to say 'what can we do?'”
Akins said larger pantries can often rely on government grants to make up the difference. Its not the first time True Life Center has experienced a shortage, and Denman said community members have always stepped up, but one of the big challenges is getting the word out to the right people.
“Really its just a matter of linking up of the avenues that can get the food into the hands of the people that need it, from the people who can get it,” said Akins.
For more information on The Life Center, visit their website: http://www.tlc2.org/