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Our View: Show your support of food pantry drive

Jan. 25, 2011 at 5:40 p.m.


By and large food drives for any community pantry do well during the holidays. That is the time of the year when people are often even more inclined to feel compassion for their fellow man.

The problem is that after the holidays food donations drop off dramatically and there is never enough to last from the holiday drives through the entire year.

By and large, people get hungry three times a day, 365 days a year with few exceptions.

The United States does not have a hunger problem like some of the third-world nations where people actually starve to death for lack of food.

There is no reason for that to happen here and we don't believe it does unless there is some other factor involved. Food sustenance can be had for those who need it.

But make no mistake, people in America do get hungry and go hungry. Especially among the age extremes - the very young and the very old - hunger is a real problem.

The United Churches of Marshall Food Pantry is the organization in our city that is dedicated to seeing that people have the food they need to survive.

And it needs our help.

The organization has just kicked off a fund drive that asks citizens to give just 10 cents a day. That is $36.50 for the entire year. A family is asked to give $73 for the year.

That $73 is probably much less than a family would spend on food for an entire week. Yet put in the hands of the food pantry, which buys food through the East Texas Food Bank, that donation can do wonders.

For $73,000, which is the ultimate goal for the drive, the food pantry can give out 584,000 meals.

Yes, that is more than half a million meals for only $73,000.

The food given out does not bring the ideal menu to the tables of those who take it. Most of us would consider it far less than desirable, but it is nutritious and filling.

This particular drive is focusing on money. The food pantry will always take actual non-perishable food items, of course, but their dollars can go so much further than yours because they can buy from the East Texas Food Bank.

The dollar you will spend, will have more value if you just give it to the food pantry.

This drive is also designed to broaden the base of those giving to the pantry. The largest donation allowed for a single person is $36.50 and for a married couple it is $73. The idea is to get donations from 2,000 people in Marshall.

That is an aggressive goal, but not an unrealistic one. We know that there are many more people than that who have the money to pay for their own and can afford the $36.50 to help others.

If you want to contribute you can send your check to the United Churches of Marshall Food Pantry, P.O. Box 1601, Marshall, TX, 75671-1601.

If you never needed help in this way count yourself as fortunate and repay that blessing by giving so that others can have their own needs eased. The amount asked for is tiny and the impact is huge.

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