Shelter pantries are running low

Jul. 23, 2013 @ 10:55 AM

Local food shelters are seeing a shortage in food supplies, and West End Ministries is no exception.
“We have had to purchase more food this year than we have ever had,” said Executive Director Chris Gillespie. “We primarily rely on food banks, food drives from churches, United Way or the postal service.”
The shelter distributes food boxes every Thursday from 3 to 5 p.m. The size of the box is determined by the size of the family. Last month it distributed 131 boxes, and Gillespie said things seem to be on pace to surpass that in July.
Some contributing factors as to why so many families are in need of more assistance this summer include the state of the economy, children being out of school and those Guilford County residents who have not received their food stamps.
“They are in such desperate need that some people are walking, riding bikes or doing whatever they can to get food home because the need is so great,” Gillespie said.”
The food boxes include a meat, several cans of vegetables, fruit, pasta, pasta sauce, cereal and perhaps a frozen meal.
“The box varies based on what we have,” Gillespie said. “We will continue to give out what we have until we don’t have anymore, but there is always a need for food. Out shelves can be full and in two weeks can be empty. It goes so fast because so many people are in need.”
Leslie Evans Graham from Open Door Ministries said the shelter is not facing a shortage this summer because she began stocking its shelves during the spring.
“In order to keep our pantry stocked, we did a lot of presentations and went to a lot of organizations, groups and churches and asked for help,” Graham said. “We are good right now.”
Graham agrees that summer months are bad for the shelter.
“When anyone asks what they can do for us, I always say a food drive,” Graham said.
Those needing a box can call West End Ministries at (336) 884-1105 to find the closest distribution point.
cdavis@hpe.com | 888-3657