A dollar donated to the Greater Baton Rouge Food Bank stretches further than a dollar at the grocery store

Updated: Sep. 23, 2020 at 3:40 PM CDT
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BATON ROUGE, La. (WAFB) - September is Hunger Action Month to help fight hunger in our communities, and even though the month is winding down, there’s still time to donate to your local food bank.

Food donations at a time like this go a long way, especially after storms and during a pandemic, but even donating a dollar can make a big difference to those families in need.

When you think of a food drive, you typically think of canned goods, but at the Charles R. Kelly Community Center food pantry, it’s so much more than that to the community.

“We get steaks, chicken, hamburgers,” said Diane Grim, a food pantry recipient. “We get fruit, vegetables, and the best part about it, they always have some chocolate candies or cookies in there.”

Grim says when she starts cooking, the people come.

“Believe it or not, I live alone, but I feed everybody,” she said.

Her monthly pantry pickups help feed her for several weeks. She says if she didn’t have the food pantry, then buying groceries would be a real challenge.

“If I didn’t have these resources, then I would be in the store penny-pinching,” said Grim.

That’s why Keshala Jackson at the Charles R. Kelly Community Center says every donation makes a difference.

“It has been really hectic for us because there are so many more families in need of food. The children have been at home for many months. Some parents are out of work,” said the community center director.

She says of course, food donations are great, but a dollar donated to the food bank stretches further than a dollar at the grocery store.

“Imagine you went to the grocery store and bought a dozen cans,” Jackson described. “That might cost you twenty bucks, you know, with the cans between $1 or 1 $1.25 each, but if you give it to the food bank and they’re able to buy in bulk, they’re buying thousands upon thousands of cans, so they get it at a lower rate.”

Those thousands of cans or rice or packs of frozen meat help put food on some families' tables every month, like Grim.

“There are so many people who are in need, and people don’t realize how many people are in need. Somebody might say that I’m bad off with this. Well, you have to think that there is somebody worse off than what you are,” said Grim.

Donations to the Greater Baton Rouge Food Bank trickle down to directly help food pantries, like the Charles R. Kelly Community Center. You can virtually donate now with the Food for Fall drive here.

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