A local organization well known for providing a hand out to the community through its food pantry is asking the community for assistance in keeping its ministry going.
For more than 16 years St. Vincent de Paul, a ministry of Sacred Heart Catholic Church, has served eligible families in Anderson County.
“Generous donations have kept the pantry going for more than 16 years. We are at a time that we need monetary donations to keep operating,” St. Vincent de Paul Board President Linda Willett told the Herald-Press. “As you know, the cost of food continues to rise and that is true for the food we purchase from the East Texas Food Bank. Without more donations, we may have to curtail our services or give out less.”
An increased number of clients also has put the organization in need. In September, there were 42 families who came to St. Vincent de Paul for food assistance for the first time. This month, there were 523 families who received food assistance for a total of 3,967 people (more than 2,900 children), Willett said.
“We have a lot of children and a lot of single parents families as well as a lot of elderly needing assistance,” Willett said. “We service all of Anderson County not just Palestine.”
The food pantry is open from 9 a.m. to noon Monday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday.
“Families are allowed to come in once a month if they are hungry. We can't provide a month's supply of food, but we give them enough for a couple of good meals. We're not feeding them completely at all, but people are very appreciative,” Willett said. “The whole social situation these days with the lack of jobs and the economy being depressed is why we are seeing such a greater need at our doors each month.”