The cupboards are bare: Local food pantry runs out of donations
SOUTH LAKE TAHOE, Calif. – The shelves of the food pantry at St. Theresa Catholic Church remind parish secretary Beverly Sass of the nursery rhyme “Old Mother Hubbard.”
The cupboards at the church’s twice-weekly food pantry have grown so bare that the pantry closed for the week. Sass said the pantry will re-open next week.
Following an appeal at the weekend Masses, parishioners have helped restock at least one of the shelves in a large closet in Grace Hall. The church is reaching out to the community for additional help, particularly with items for children, including peanut butter, jelly and cereal.
“There are children hungry all over our community these days,” Sass said. “We encourage people to donate things that will fill their tummies and be nutritious.”
For the past seven years, the pantry has been open from 1:30 to 3 p.m. Tuesdays and Fridays. There is usually a line around the building by the time the pantry opens. But on Tuesday, the parking lot was empty, except for two workers cleaning the parking lot.
Sass hoped patrons weren’t trying to make the trip to the food pantry.
“They walk, they bike three miles from their motel room,” she said. “They come in all weather. They carry their food back. If they come here (today), they’re going to have to go back.”
About 80 people come to the food pantry when it’s open.
“We have more families than ever,” Sass said.
The pantry is stocked entirely by donations. Local farmers markets have been donating fresh fruit.
“Some of these folks can’t afford to buy fruit,” Sass said. “It’s such a big treat.”
In addition to items to feed children, needed items include canned food with pull-tops, tuna, macaroni and cheese and instant soups.
Sass said Cup O Noodles are helpful, since someone can fill the cup with hot water from a bathroom and instantly have a hot meal.
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