Food Pantry Supplies Dwindle as Line of Hungry People Grows

Food Pantry Supplies Dwindle as Line of Hungry People Grows

The Peoria Friendship House says its food pantry supplies are low, but the line of hungry people keeps growing.
PEORIA - The Peoria Friendship House says its food pantry supplies are low, but the line of hungry people keeps growing.

"To have to turn someone away is absolutely horrible," said Jenny Lee, Friendship House Director of Community Support Services.

She said last week was especially rough.

"I had one of my coworkers come and tell me that we only had 20 bags left. So we cut it off at 45 so anybody that came after the number 45 we had to turn away."

Every Wednesday a line stretches out the Friendship House’s side door. An even though people are only allowed to come once a month, the seats in the waiting room are always full. The faces of young mothers, the elderly and this Wednesday, a 52-year-old woman named Connie Waldron.

"You know you just can't make it all month, you know so everything here they give you a lot of canned goods and whatever they get. If it weren't for them we wouldn't have had nothing," she said.

Waldron said she relies on Social Security and her Link Card.

"Only buys you bread and milk and eggs and that's it. You know, can't go buy meats, it's too high,” Waldron said.

When asked if she could survive off bread, milk and eggs she said, “No, no.”

That's why Waldron visits the food pantry. She's lucky to get food this time. Lee said having to turn down a hungry stomach is one of the hardest parts of her job.

"Desperate of what do I do now, you know, am I in this alone?" Lee said. "I put myself in that person’s position and wouldn't want to be there."

"It’s a horrible feeling," she said.

Lee is sending out a plea to the community to help donate. Lee said the end of the month is the busiest so she's expecting even more people over the next few Wednesdays. She's hoping that the community will step in to help when supplies run low.

For details on how to help, click here.
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