West End Local Link (WELL) volunteer Norman Murray sorts through a freezer at the food bank in the basement of Union Lutheran Church on West Market Street
West End Local Link (WELL) volunteer Norman Murray sorts through a freezer at the food bank in the basement of Union Lutheran Church on West Market Street in York on Thursday. The emergency food provider is in need of Thanksgiving dinner food items. Murray of York City has been volunteering there for five years. (Bill Kalina photo)

The WELL has a new site, but near-empty shelves.

West End Local Link operates a food pantry in the basement of Union Lutheran Church at 408 W. Market St. in York City

The agency, formerly located at 595 W. Market St. in the city, moved to Union Lutheran in February, said Carol Spencer, president of the agency's board of directors.

But for the next several months, the WELL operated at other locations, including York Benevolent Association, while Union's basement was being renovated to accommodate the agency, she said.

The agency -- which also provides emergency financial assistance for prescription drugs -- began serving families at the Union site this month.

"Our new place is so nice and so bright," she said. "We have a large waiting area for clients, and good, secure food storage. We have a baby room to keep baby supplies like diapers, formulas and food."

The agency received donations of computers and software and other pantry equipment.

While the WELL receives canned goods and personal care donations from local

churches, the agency needs more of those items in order to keep up with families' needs, Spencer said.

The agency is in dire need of dry spaghetti noodles, peanut butter, toothpaste and toothbrushes, she said.

The WELL serves more then 60 families a week from throughout York County, though that number has increased to 70 families several times this year, Spencer said.

The additional families are struggling with unemployment and underemployment and receive food from the WELL to stretch out their meals, Spencer said.

--Reach Eyana Adah McMillan at emcmillan@yorkdispatch.com.