Looking forward, Catholic Charities has new, exciting ways to help meet the food need in our diocesan area.
One of the main areas of need we see in our community is food. Clients often call or come in asking if we have a food pantry or any food items to give away. In the most recent past, Catholic Charities has served as an emergency food provider for clients who quite literally don’t have enough food for that day.
Our Welcome Center is able to provide that need, and then assist clients in applying for SNAP benefits (Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Plans), or food stamps, to help provide for them in the future.
A barrier we see commonly is the lack of awareness to available resources within our community. Many clients come in not knowing they qualify for SNAP benefits. For example, when meeting someone for financial assistance, a client might state they have had no income and were unable to receive food stamps due to their criminal record. Then, when asked how they pay for food, they might say they just don’t eat or go to a certain pantry once a week.
Along with food being sparse, other barriers can include a lack of storage or refrigeration, transportation, and the expense of more nutritious foods. For our clients who do qualify for SNAP benefits, the application can be overwhelming, especially for those who have difficulty reading and writing.
Thankfully, our community is full of resources and great connections. We always offer them the food pantry/meal site list which provides addresses, phone numbers, and hours of operation for different food pantries and meal sites. During the pandemic, we’ve been pleased to partner with community agencies and offer food distributions for neighbors in need. We plan to continue with this in the months to come.
Looking forward, Catholic Charities has new, exciting ways to help meet the food need in our diocesan area. Stay tuned and be sure to read the rest of the newsletter to hear how food needs impact our other departments!
For more information, please contact Kisha Thomas at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 816-659-8237.