Second Harvest of Coastal Georgia calling for community help

(Source: America's Second Harvest of Coastal Georgia)
(Source: America's Second Harvest of Coastal Georgia)
Published: Sep. 22, 2022 at 6:42 AM EDT
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SAVANNAH, Ga. (WTOC) - A Savannah resident receives recognition for her hard work to end hunger in Coastal Georgia.

America’s Second Harvest Food Bank of Coastal Georgia hosted a luncheon to pay tribute to its volunteers.

Savannah’s volunteer of the year, Kate Fox-Marrs received special recognition.

Second Harvest says without volunteers the nonprofit could not fulfill its mission every year.

Second Harvest of Coastal Georgia gave out 40 percent more food last month than they did the prior month and they don’t see that slowing down anytime soon.

If you are at the grocery store today, you can always pick up a few extra items to drop off, or you can donate online or even host your own food drive.

Second Harvest relies on help from the community as they continue to see the need increase – mainly due to rising food prices.

Mary Jane Crouch, the executive director, says the price of eggs is up 40 percent and chicken is now up more than 16 percent.

Those prices combined with higher prices for gas, rent and just about everything else has forced families to make tough decisions.

“It just all culminates to the fact that they just don’t have enough money and the only place they can cut back is in food, because if they don’t pay rent they lose their house and if they don’t pay their electricity, it gets turned off, so it really and truly is the only place that a lot of families are able to say we have to take a step back,” Crouch said.

That is when Second Harvest steps in and they will be hosting a mobile food pantry in Chatham County on Friday to help 1,000 families.

September is Hunger Action Month, which is a time to create awareness about food insecurity in our community.

Food Lion is donating food to stock the Second Harvest’s shelves and freezer on Thursday.

Then Friday, they will be out in the community to donate food to anyone in need. You can stop by Oglethorpe Mall in Savannah from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. to get some free food to feed the family, including meat and produce.

Crouch says they are seeing an increase of people in need but also, a changing face to hunger in our community.

“A lot of people think of hunger think of a homeless person or things like that and it’s not that we don’t want to help them and we do through our pantry programs and our congregate feeding sites but right now the people that we are seeing and coming to us have never been to a food bank or the COVID pandemic was the first time they even knew there was a food bank.”

In addition to the mobile food pantries, they are also serving about 4,000 meals a day to kids after school to help fill the need.