GREENSBORO, N.C. — We've seen the trickle-down effect of the government shutdown, all the way to some Triad food banks.
Ed Lemons says his supply at the Blessed Table Food Pantry in Greensboro is running low.
"We done spent our allowance for this week and as you can see these shelves are empty and it's not going to get any better until the government opens back up," he explains.
They might have to shutdown, too, because they're running out of food to give out and they're seeing more people come in. Times are tight and with SNAP benefits coming early for February, they're worried people might need to visit sooner than usual.
"They have other bills to pay and they got to make a decision," Lemons explains. "They need to buy food or pay the bills?."
If you're in this position, financial planner Matt Logan has some advice:
Write down everything you need; bills like water, rent, power and then factor in food.
Everything else? Cut it from the budget.
"That's the negative list," Logan explains. "You want those off your budget and really just try to scrape by with as little as you can."
He adds, be careful about charging everything on a card. With the shutdown uncertainty, it can be hard to dig out of debt.
"You've got to go back and clear off that debt you've accrued. Don't use it as a lump sum moving forward and then create larger spending problems and spending expenses."
Here's where you can donate food or money to help keep shelves stocked at food banks in the Triad:
- Allied Churches, 206 N. Fisher St., Burlington
- Salvation Army, 812 Anthony St., Burlington
- Pastor’s Pantry, 307 N. State Street, Lexington
- A Storehouse for Jesus, 675 E. Lexington Road, Mocksville
- Second Harvest Food Bank of Northwest NC, 3655 Reed St. in Winston-Salem
- Greensboro Urban Ministry, 305 W. Gate City Blvd.
- Open Door Ministries: 400 N. Centennial Street, High Point
- Blessed Tables, 3210 Summit Avenue. Greensboro
- Community Outreach of Archdale and Trinity, 10607 U.S. 311, Archdale
- Christians United Outreach Center, 135 Sunset Avenue, Asheboro
- Reidsville Outreach Center, 435 S.W. Market Street, Reidsville
Eric A. Aft, CEO, Second Harvest Food Bank of Northwest NC released this statement Friday about the impact of the shutdown
“The partial federal government shutdown has highlighted a serious problem in our country: Working families cannot always make ends meet. Nearly 80% of Americans are living paycheck to paycheck, including a large number of federal employees and contractors. We know that furloughed workers and contractors and those working without pay are struggling to feed their families, and that’s not a situation anyone should be in.
“Second Harvest Food Bank of Northwest North Carolina is treating this situation as an emergency—because it is. We are supporting our far-reaching network of over 460 on-the-ground partner programs as they respond to this need in their local communities. We know that counties in our service region such as Guilford and Forsyth have a large number of federal employees, and members of our network in these areas have been taking proactive steps to reach these families with additional food distributions.
“Across the 18 counties of Northwest North Carolina, the Second Harvest Food Bank network is prepared to help all families impacted by the government shutdown as they adapt to a new reality of needing food assistance. We encourage federal employees, contractors, and anyone in need of food assistance to visit hungernwnc.org/our-partners to find their closest grocery assistance program or call Second Harvest Food Bank at 336.784.5770.
“As the shutdown drags on, Second Harvest Food Bank stays committed to doing all in our power to support impacted families. If you want to support Second Harvest Food Bank and our partners as we continue to respond to the increased needs in our community brought on by this extended government shutdown, you can make a gift online at hungernwnc.org or contact us directly at 336.784.5770.”
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